By an order, the Minister of Health and Solidarity, Mr. Olivier Véran, appointed Professor Fabrice Barlesi as General Director of Gustave Roussy for a term of five years from 1 August 2021. He succeeds Professor Jean-Charles Soria who will leave his position for family reasons. Professor Barlesi’s appointment ensures that Gustave Roussy will continue to work together to develop an ambitious new institutional strategic plan.
Appointed by order on 15 july by the Minister of Health and Solidarity, Professor Barlesi presented his candidacy to the Gustave Roussy Medical Commission and Board of Directors as well as to the Board of Unicancer, the only national hospital federation dedicated to cancer. These three bodies approved his nomination.
The institutional strategic plan, conceived over the last eighteen months, that Professor Barlesi is going to deploy sets a clear course for the next ten years and is in perfect harmony with the ten-year cancer strategy presented by President Emmanuel Macron on February 4. This strategic vision is the basis for a profound transformation of the institution and of cancer research.
The Cancer Paris-Saclay biocluster co-founded by Gustave Roussy and announced by the French President on June 28, 2021 is one of the major pillars of this institutional plan.
As the result of a process carried out since February 2020 by all staff, this institutional plan has been supported and validated by all Gustave Roussy's bodies and by its supervisory authorities. Its broad outlines will be made public this autumn. In his new position, Professor Barlesi will draw on the richness of personnel and expertise of the institution to implement this plan.
Expert in lung cancer, precision medicine and cancer immunology, Professor Fabrice Barlesi is one of the major players in research into innovative cancer therapies. He has been Medical Director and Director of Clinical Research at Gustave Roussy since 2020 and is keen to continue the development ambitions of the French cancer flagship.
Professor of Medicine at the University of Aix-Marseille (he will join the University of Paris Saclay in 2022), Professor Barlesi directed until 2020 the multidisciplinary oncology and therapeutic innovations department of the Hôpital Nord in Marseille (AP-HM) as well as the Marseille early cancer trials center (CLIP2), which he created. He holds a doctorate in science and management, methods of analysis of health systems and a master's degree in general hospital management from ESSEC.
Professor Barlesi also co-founded the French immunology cluster Marseille Immunopôle, whose mission is to bring together the immunology expertise of the Aix-Marseille area. In this context, he leads the international research project PIONeeR (Investment for the future RHU 2017) which aims to better understand, prevent and overcome resistance to immunotherapy - anti-PD1(L1) - in lung cancer. He was also vice-president of the PACA cancer cluster.
Professor Barlesi has authored and co-authored nearly 400 publications in international journals and specialized books. In 2018, the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) and the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) awarded him the prestigious Heine H. Hansen Award. Fabrice Barlesi is listed as one of the most influential researchers in the world (Highly cited researchers by Web of Science Group).