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The French Cancer Cluster

As the first winner of the France 2030 NextGenerationEU program, the Paris Saclay Cancer Cluster (PSCC) is changing the pace of innovation in oncology to make it more predictive, precise and efficient.

To accelerate this transformation, the oncocluster aims to catalyze exchanges within the oncology community, strengthen the available offer to innovation projects, and provide the most promising European researchers and developers with access to the best expertise, tools and services in the field: mentors, networks, funding, data, samples, technologies, infrastructures and laboratories.

This patient-driven ecosystem, unique in Europe in terms of its size, wealth and ambition, has been developing since 2023 in the heart of Greater Paris, close to major French research, clinical and innovation centers.

Created in February 2022 at the initiative of the Paris-Saclay University, the Polytechnic Institute of Paris, Inserm, the Gustave Roussy Institute and Sanofi, the PSCC already brings together a continuum of excellence with nearly 80 members and 9 nationalities: research organizations, universities, hospitals, start-ups, scale-ups, industrialists, capital investors, patient associations, government, local authorities and stakeholders. 

Chaired by Professors Eric Vivier and Solange Peters, the association and its Strategic Advisory Board reflect the cluster's twofold ambition: to change the destiny of millions of patients and to position France and Europe at the forefront of the world's leading pharmaceutical industry. 

The PSCC gives innovators access to the best experts in the field, to disruptive technologies as well as to the data, funding, space and network that are essential to their success

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Model

In the age of the virtual economy, the PSCC is betting on proximity by creating a territory of excellence open to all...

Key dates

Over 40 years of discoveries and innovations...

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Cancer

One man in five and one woman in six will develop cancer during their lifetime...

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Model

A “best-in-class” model

 

In the age of the virtual economy, the PSCC is betting on proximity by creating a territory of excellence open to all (academics, start-ups, scale-ups, industrialists, patients, politicians and institutions) where one can access all the resources that condition the success of innovation in oncology (talents, technologies, network, financing, spaces, patients and associated data). To foster, drive and support such a complex process, the cluster also implements a fast, efficient and transparent model based on three pillars:

  • Interdisciplinarity 

This is the cluster's DNA and the key to targeting a disease as multiparametric as cancer and early-stage projects such as those supported by the PSCC. By vocation and culture, the cluster brings together disciplines (biology, mathematics, physics, artificial intelligence, etc.) and application areas (therapeutics, diagnostics, medical devices, digital health).

  • A one-stop shop 

To increase their chances of success, innovators need expertise and resources, but also simplicity, efficiency and proximity. In connection with all the innovation players in the region (clusters, competitiveness clusters, technology transfer companies, incubators, start-up studio, etc), the guidance and support office (SOO) is their one-stop shop at every stage. Bringing together R&D experts and innovation professionals, the SOO pre-selects the projects submitted to the evaluation committee, then advises the winners, coordinates their interactions with technology platforms and facilitates their access to funding and partnerships.

  • A selective approach

The PSCC concentrates its resources where it can make a difference, that is on early-stage projects (ideation, creation, pre-seed, seed, acceleration) that are scientifically creative and have very high diagnostic or therapeutic potential. To capture the best of discovery and innovation, it relies on a rigorous selection process and an independent evaluation committee made up of experienced scientists and entrepreneurs. Depending on their ranking, the selected projects benefit from all or part of the PSCC's offer.

Key dates

Over 40 years of discoveries and innovations

 

Although the PSCC was officially created in 2022, its history began more than 40 years ago with the installation of the Gustave Roussy Institute in Villejuif, a few kilometers from the famous Saclay plateau. However, it was not until 2006 and the creation of the Cancer Campus association that the future French cancer cluster was truly launched. 

1926

Creation of the Cancer Institute by the Professor Gustave Roussy.

1946-1980

Development of the Saclay scientific center, bringing together research laboratories, universities and grandes écoles. In the space of 30 years, the eponymous plateau will become Europe's leading research and innovation cluster.

1980

The Gustave Roussy Institute moves to the Hautes-Bruyères site in Villejuif.

1999

Emergence of a new territory: the scientific valley of the Bièvre.

2006

The Gustave Roussy Institute, the City of Villejuif, the Department of Val-de-Marne, the Paris Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Caisse des dépôts et consignations created the Cancer Campus association. The EPT GOSB, the Assistance Publique- Hôpitaux de Paris, the Université Paris-Saclay and the Region joined the Cancer Campus.

2010

Just created, the Société du Grand Paris launches the Grand Paris Express project.

By 2025, the cluster will be located less than 15 minutes by metro from the center of the capital.

2011

Launch of the Campus Grand Parc  project led by the developer Sadev 94.

2016

Creation of the Greater Paris métropole. In the same year, the State, local authorities and major scientific players in the region consolidated the health cluster in the Île-de-France region by signing the contract of national interest for the Bièvre Scientific Valley.

2017

The AP-HP, the Curie Institute and the Gustave Roussy Institute create the SeqOIA very high throughput sequencing laboratory, in partnership with the Imagine Institute and the Universities of Ile-de-France.

2019

Founding of the first European university: the Paris-Saclay University.

2020

Inserm, the Paris-Saclay University, CentraleSupélec and the Gustave Roussy Institute launch the PRISM national precision oncology center.

2022

Creation of the Paris Saclay Cancer Cluster (PSCC). The same year, the cluster became the first winner of the France 2030 NextGenerationEU program.

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Cancer

One in five men and one in six women will develop cancer during their lifetime[1] and these figures are expected to increase further due to the aging of the world’s population, improved diagnosis and changes in our lifestyles. On the other hand, mortality is constantly decreasing[2],[3]: for all cancers combined, the 5-year survival rate was 30% in 1970, 50% in 2000 and should reach nearly 80% in 2030.

 

However, this rate varies greatly according to the type of cancer (pleural mesothelioma or pancreatic adenocarcinoma remain the two most deadly cancers), gender (cancers with a good prognosis preferentially affect women), and gross national income (in low- and middle-income countries, cancer mortality is not only higher, but the number of new cases is constantly increasing).

 

[1] Global Cancer Observatory; IARC, WHO

[2] Global cancer statistics 2018: GLOBOCAN estimates of incidence and mortality worldwide for 36 cancers in 185 countries, F. Bray et al., Cancer J. Clin., Dec 2018

[3] Cancer Today (data visualization tools), IARC, J. Ferlay et al; https://gco.iarc.fr/today

[4] Cancer Tomorrow (data visualization tools), IARC, J. Ferlay et al; https://gco.iarc.fr/tomorrow

[5] Clinicaltrials.gov on Jan 25th 2023

[6] ECIS - European Cancer Information System

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