18 september 2023.

Roche France, Foundation Medicine and the Institute Gustave Roussy announce unique partnership to provide in-house liquid biopsy genomic testing to cancer patients in France


  • Roche France and Foundation Medicine will transfer FoundationOne® Liquid CDx technology to the Institute Gustave Roussy, with the potential to provide comprehensive genomic profiling (CGP) through liquid biopsy testing to all patients with advanced cancer in France
  • Liquid biopsy testing, which is based on the analysis of circulating cell-free DNA, is an important option for patients with advanced cancer, allowing them to benefit from CGP when a tissue biopsy is not possible or recommended, and may yield results faster than tissue testing
  • The partnership underscores Roche and Foundation Medicine’s commitment to investing in personalised healthcare to advance precision medicine

Roche France, Foundation Medicine, Inc. and the Institute Gustave Roussy, the leading cancer centre in Europe, announced today a unique partnership to establish in-house liquid biopsy testing at the Institute Gustave Roussy’s facilities in France, by transferring technology from Foundation Medicine’s FoundationOne®Liquid CDx, a blood-based comprehensive genomic profiling (CGP) test.

Using a simple blood sample, FoundationOne Liquid CDx analyses more than 300 cancer-related genes for genomic alterations that cause the cancer to grow. Identifying alterations in the cancer genome of a patient can help provide a diagnosis faster, and guide treatment strategies. CGP has transformed the traditional ‘one-size fits-all’ approach to cancer and is an important tool for identifying rare and hard to find mutations. FoundationOne Liquid CDx also reports tumour fraction, to provide prognostic, diagnostic and predictive insights that inform research or treatment decisions for individual patients across all solid tumours. Liquid biopsy allows more patients with advanced cancer to benefit from the targeted therapies informed by CGP, for example when a tissue biopsy is not possible or recommended, because the tumour is inaccessible, when there is insufficient tissue, when preferred because of patient convenience or when results are needed more quickly. Liquid biopsy is indicated in all guidelines for the management of patients living with cancer including ESMO, ASCO and NCCN.

As part of this public-private partnership, the Institute Gustave Roussy will increase its biopathology capacity by creating an innovative laboratory for genomic testing in coordination with various leading precision medicine experts, centres and institutions in France. This will drive advancement for cancer patients being treated in France by making CGP available to more patients, enabling physicians to more efficiently diagnose their patients and identify potential treatments options, as well as accelerating the development of new clinical trials, providing comprehensive insights to support research and development, and contributing to the optimisation of treatment strategies and care pathways.

“This future platform for the strategic analysis of liquid biopsies together with the creation of clinico-genomic database will support the advancements already made possible by the France Médecine Génonique 2025 plan,” said Professor Fabrice Barlesi, General Director of the Institute Gustave Roussy. “Genomic profiling is indicated for up to 200,000 patients every year in France, and this partnership could help provide access to cancer treatments tailored to the individual patient’s actionable molecular alterations, as well as access more clinical trials, particularly in early phases, enabling greater equity in access to precision medicine.”

"Liquid biopsy is a diagnostic revolution that we expect will improve quality of life and outcomes for many people living with cancer," said Jean-François Brochard, President of Roche Pharma France. "The transfer of FoundationOne Liquide CDx technology to the Institute Gustave Roussy represents a major step forward in improving its availability to patients in Europe, and demonstrates Roche's commitment to investing in more personalised, tailored medicine to better meet their needs"

“Cancer is a disease of the genome and it’s critical that physicians have access to high-quality, well-validated genomic tests to inform treatment options for their patients,” said Brian Alexander, Chief Executive Officer, Foundation Medicine. “Our vision is to make comprehensive genomic profiling indispensable to cancer care and this partnership with the Institute Gustave Roussy is a critical step forward in realising that vision.”

This partnership, expected to become fully operational in 2024, underscores the commitment from Roche and Foundation Medicine to invest in personalised healthcare, combining pioneering science, data, analytics and technology to advance care and improve patients’ lives. This partnership also aims to strengthen the ecosystem of the Paris-Saclay Cancer Cluster, initiated following President Macron’s announcement in June 2021 as part of the Strategic Council of Health Industries.

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