Villejuif, 27 june 2019
Microbiome & cancer:
the ONCOBIOME consortium led by Gustave Roussy has obtained 15 m€ from Europe
Gustave Roussy, leading European Cancer Centre, is collaborating with 16 international partners in the Oncobiome consortium. The objective of the programme is to determine the relationship between intestinal microbial signatures (GOMS) and the incidence, prognosis and resistance to treatment (and toxicity of this) in cancers of breast, colon, lung and melanoma. This project is being supported by a grant of 15 million euros from the European Union Horizon fund (H2020).
Gustave Roussy, one of 18 Cancer Centres and member of Unicancer, was chosen for its Oncobiome project by the European Commission as a result of the tendering process for project SC1-BHC-03-2018, “Exploitation of research results and the potential for application of the human microbiome in prediction, prevention and personalised treatment of disease”.
The Oncobiome research units seek to confirm the link between cancer and intestinal microbiota and to show that the efficacy of treatment depends on specific features of the intestinal microbiome. It is already recognised that the intestinal metagenome is involved in the regulation of multiple physiological functions with effects on health. It is implicated in the initiation and progression of cancer and in response to treatment even in extra-intestinal neoplasia.
“There is an urgent need to identify and characterise the commensal ecosystem minimalism related to cancer using robust, reliable techniques; to define the intestinal microbiome signatures associated with cancer; and to develop diagnostic tools which will become a part of the oncological arsenal to optimise and personalise treatment,” explains Professor Laurence Zitvogel, scientific director of the Gustave Roussy immunotherapy programme, director of the Inserm U1015 Unit, RHU Lumiére prizewinner financed by the National Research Agency, and coordinator of Oncobiome.
The Oncobiome project will thus embark on an analysis of the data from more than 9,000 cancer patients in 8 countries (Germany, England, Canada, France, Italy, the Netherlands, the Czech Republic and Sweden) employing retrospective and prospective studies in four common cancers: breast, colorectal, lung and melanoma.
The consortium scientists have set themselves 4 principal objectives:
1 / to identify and validate the intestinal microbiotic signatures associated with the onset and prognosis of the disease and its resistance to and the toxicity of anti-cancer therapies,
2 / to define the functional relevance of these intestinal ecosystems associated with cancer to the regulation of metabolism, immunity and oncogenesis in the host,
3 / to combine these GOMS with other oncological characteristics (clinical, genetic, immunological and metabolic),
4 / to develop specific tests, based on these combined signatures to predict the onset and progression of the cancer.
The project commenced officially on 1st January 2019, and was launched with all the collaborators on 4th February 2019. It will run for 5 years. It is supported by the European Commission with a grant of 15 million euros. The following French units are participating: Gustave Roussy, l’Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale [National Institute for Health and Medical Research] (Inserm), Paris-Sud University and Unicancer, together with the three companies HalioDx, everIMMUNE and Algoé. The other collaborators in Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, the Czech Republic, the United Kingdom, Sweden and Canada are: Universita Degli Studi Di Trento, Fondazione IRCCS Instituto Nazionale dei Tumori, Masarykova Univerzita, Universitatsklinikum Erlangen, Stichting Katholieke Universiteit, Italian Institute for Genomic Medicine Foundation, The Chancellor Masters and Scholars of the University of Cambridge, Karolinska Institutet, le Centre Hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal, Philipps-Universität Marburg, and the GBG Forschung GMBH company.
This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 825410