Different types of drugs are used to treat ovarian cancer, including targeted therapy. Targeted therapy is a type of cancer treatment that targets proteins in cancer cells that help the cancer grow, divide, and spread. Targeted therapy drugs identify these specific proteins and attack the cancer cells while trying to minimize damage to healthy cells.1
Mvasi™ (bevacizumab-awwb) a targeted therapy that is a biosimilar to Avastin® (bevacizumab). Biosimilars are highly similar to an already-approved biologic. Biologics are made from living organisms, such as living cells. A biosimilar is not a generic version of a brand-name drug since it is not an exact replica. In order for a drug to be considered a biosimilar, researchers must prove in clinical trials that it has similar safety and efficacy as its reference product.1,2
Unlike the reference drug Avastin, Mvasi is not currently approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat ovarian cancer. However, your doctor may offer you Mvasi as an “off-label” treatment option. Off-label treatment means that the drug is used in a different way than formally approved by the FDA, but your doctor may think the drug will benefit your diagnosis and treatment.1-3
What are the ingredients in Mvasi?
The active ingredient in Mvasi is bevacizuman-awwb.4
How does Mvasi work?
Mvasi is a targeted therapy drug that belongs to the drug class of monoclonal antibodies. It works by blocking a certain protein called vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). While healthy cells make some VEGF, some cancer cells make too much VEGF. Blocking VEGF may help to prevent new blood vessel growth, including blood vessels that provide nutrients tumors need to grow.4-6
By blocking VEGF, Mvasi helps “starve” cancerous tumors, preventing them from growing and spreading.4-6
What are the possible side effects of Mvasi?
The common side effects of Mvasi may include:4-6
- High levels of protein in the urine
- Changes in how things taste
- Rectal bleeding
- Back pain
- Dry skin
- Nausea and vomiting
- Low white blood cell count, which can lead to a higher risk for infection
- Mouth sores
- High blood pressure
Less common side effects may include:4-6
- Shortness of breath
- Weight loss
- Muscle aches and pains
Possible serious side effects may include:4-6
- GI perforation (a hole in the wall of the gastrointestinal tract)
- Problems with wound healing
- Serious bleeding
- Severe high blood pressure
- Kidney problems
- Stroke or heart problems
- Nervous system or vision problems
- Fistula (an abnormal connection between 2 hollow spaces in the body, such as blood vessels or the intestines)
These are not all the possible side effects of Mvasi. Talk to your doctor about what to expect or if you experience any changes that concern you during treatment with Mvasi.
Things to know about Mvasi
Mvasi is not right for everyone. Tell your doctor if you are having surgery soon. Taking this drug before or after surgery may interfere with healing and bleeding.5
Mvasi can cause harm to an unborn baby and should not be given to women who are pregnant. Women who may become pregnant should use birth control (contraception) during treatment and for a period of time after the last dose of Mvasi. Talk to your doctor about the right birth control options and how long you need to use them. Women should also not breastfeed during treatment with Mvasi and for a period of time after the last dose. Talk to your doctor about breastfeeding options.5
Before beginning treatment with Mvasi, talk to your doctor about any other health issues you have. Also tell your doctor about any other drugs, vitamins, or supplements you are taking. This includes over-the-counter drugs.
For more information, read the full prescribing information of Mvasi (bevacizumab-awwb).