Avastin is a tumor-starving (or anti-angiogenic) biologic therapy. Cancers need blood in order to grow. To get enough blood, tumors tell the body to grow new blood vessels. Angiogenesis inhibitors block this process. Avastin blocks a protein called vascular endothelial growth factor, or VEGF. Normal cells produce VEGF, but some cancer cells overproduce VEGF. Blocking VEGF may prevent the growth of new blood vessels that feed tumors.
Avastin is administered through an injection every two weeks in combination with other chemotherapies.
Common Side Effects
- Loss of appetite, nausea and/or vomiting
- Dry skin/skin inflammation
- Back pain
- Taste change
- Fertility issues
- High blood pressure