JAMA: Effect of Fruquintinib vs Placebo on Overall Survival in Patients With Previously Treated Metastatic Colorectal Cancer // Chi-Med
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Presentations | 26 Jun 2018

JAMA: Effect of Fruquintinib vs Placebo on Overall Survival in Patients With Previously Treated Metastatic Colorectal Cancer

The FRESCO Randomized Clinical Trial

Jin Li; Shukui Qin; Rui-Hua Xu; Lin Shen; Jianming Xu; Yuxian Bai; Lei Yang; Yanhong Deng; Zhen-dong Chen; Haijun Zhong; Hongming Pan; Weijian Guo; Yongqian Shu; Ying Yuan; Jianfeng Zhou; Nong Xu; Tianshu Liu; Dong Ma; Changping Wu; Ying Cheng; Donghui Chen; Wei Li; Sanyuan Sun; Zhuang Yu; Peiguo Cao; Haihui Chen; Jiejun Wang; Shubin Wang; Hongbing Wang; Songhua Fan; Ye Hua; Weiguo Su




Patients with metastatic colorectal cancer (CRC) have limited effective and tolerable treatment options.


To evaluate the efficacy and safety of oral fruquintinib, a vascular endothelial growth factor receptor (VEGFR) inhibitor, as third-line or later therapy in patients with metastatic CRC.

Design, Setting, and Participants

FRESCO (Fruquintinib Efficacy and Safety in 3+ Line Colorectal Cancer Patients) was a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicenter (28 hospitals in China), phase 3 clinical trial. From December 2014 to May 2016, screening took place among 519 patients aged 18 to 75 years who had metastatic CRC that progressed after at least 2 lines of chemotherapy but had not received VEGFR inhibitor therapy; 416 met the eligibility criteria and were stratified by prior anti-VEGF therapy and K-ras status. The final date of follow-up was January 17, 2017.


Patients were randomized in a 2:1 ratio to receive either fruquintinib, 5 mg (n = 278) or placebo (n = 138) orally, once daily for 21 days, followed by 7 days off in 28-day cycles, until disease progression, intolerable toxicity, or study withdrawal.

Main Outcomes and Measures

The primary end point was overall survival. Key secondary efficacy endpoints were progression-free survival (time from randomization to disease progression or death), objectiveresponse rate (confirmed complete or partial response), and disease control rate (complete or partial response, or stabledisease recorded ≥8 weeks postrandomization). Duration of response was also assessed. Safety outcomes included treatment-emergent adverse events.


Of the 416 randomized patients (mean age, 54.6 years; 161 [38.7%] women), 404 (97.1%) completed the trial. Median overall survival was significantly prolonged with fruquintinib compared with placebo (9.3 months [95% CI, 8.2-10.5] vs 6.6 months [95% CI, 5.9-8.1]); hazard ratio (HR) for death, 0.65 (95% CI, 0.51-0.83; P < .001). Median progression-free survival was also significantly increased with fruquintinib (3.7 months [95% CI, 3.7-4.6] vs 1.8 months [95% CI, 1.8-1.8] months); HR for progression or death, 0.26 (95% CI, 0.21 to 0.34; P < .001). Grades 3 and 4 treatment-emergent adverse events occurred in 61.2% (170) of patients who received fruquintinib and 19.7% (27) who received placebo. Serious adverse events were reported by 15.5% (43) of patients in the fruquintinib group and 5.8% (8) in the placebo group, with 14.4% (40) of fruquintinib-treated and 5.1% (7) of placebo-treated patients requiring hospitalization.

Conclusions and Relevance

Among Chinese patients with metastatic CRC who had tumor progression following at least 2 prior chemotherapy regimens, oral fruquintinib compared with placebo resulted in a statistically significant increase in overall survival. Further research is needed to assess efficacy outside of China.

Trial Registration  ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT02314819


Citations and Links

Please follow the link below to access the publication:

JAMA. 2018;319(24):2486-2496.

DOI: 10.1001/jama.2018.7855