Bevacizumab-based neoadjuvant chemotherapy for colorectal cancer liver metastases: Pitfalls and helpful tricks in a review for clinicians

Filippo Pietrantonio, Armando Orlandi, Alessandro Inno, Valentina Da Prat, Daniele Spada, Alessandro Iaculli, Maria Di Bartolomeo, Carlo Morosi, Filippo De Braud

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)


Bevacizumab added to chemotherapy has shown encouraging efficacy in the neoadjuvant therapy of colorectal cancer liver metastases. In absence of biological predictor factors of efficacy to bevacizumab-based treatment, the assessment of response may be a crucial point to select patients who may benefit the most from surgery. At the same time the pathological response after liver resection could represent a guide for the next therapeutic plan. In the pre-surgical phase, conventional computed tomography and response evaluation with RECIST criteria may underestimate the response to anti-angiogenic drugs. Modified computed tomography criteria of response, morphologic changes as well as novel imaging techniques and metabolic assessment by fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography seem to be promising methods for the assessment of response and for leading the clinical choices. Pathological response at the time of surgery is an important prognostic factor and a surrogate of survival for resected patients. Different classification criteria to assess pathological response have been developed, residual viable tumor, tumor regression grade (TRG), modified TRG and tumor thickness at the tumor-normal interface, but to date a superiority of one approach over the others has not been clearly established. In this review, we evaluate the available data with the aim to help the clinicians in the pre- and post-surgical care of patient with colorectal cancer liver metastases treated with bevacizumab-based neoadjuvant strategy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)272-281
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Bevacizumab
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Liver metastases
  • Neoadjuvant
  • Response criteria


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