The theme-based Multi-Organization Institute for Cancer (ITMO Cancer) aims to federate all research teams working on cancer diseases, regardless of their associated supervisory bodies. ITMO Cancer thus aims to submit concrete actions to improve the performance and competitiveness of French research, to ensure proper coordination between all bodies and institutions involved in cancer research, to lead consultation, and facilitate interdisciplinary exchanges in the cancer community.

ITMO Cancer experts reaffirm their commitment to:


Experiences from the past 10 years… 

Conceptual revolutions have taken place in the past ten years, which have dramatically changed the field of oncology. In particular, the vast array of cancer-type diseases has emerged. The immune system has been shown to play a central role in controlling pre-cancerous cells, leading to the emergence of new areas of research. Tumoral heterogeneity, the clonal architecture of cancer cell populations, cellular plasticity, and the increasingly strong arguments on the existence of cancer-initiating stem cells have led to a different perception of tumors, no longer as monolithic, uniform cell groups, but as changing ecosystems, sensitive to the surrounding conditions and selection pressure. Stratification of cancer by "omic technologies" offers a new dimension, aiming to shed light on their complexity, propose and predict the validity of new therapeutic approaches, analyze and understand resistance, identify biomarkers for diagnosis, theranostics and disease progression. 

The ultimate Holy Grail is the in-depth characterization of the biological signature of each tumor, enabling reliable, optimized treatments to be envisaged. In terms of prevention, the detection and analysis of circulating cancer cells and circulating tumor DNA open up new extremely promising prospects to outstrip the emergence or resurgence of disease. The ongoing revolutions are already being applied on a therapeutic level with spectacular results, for certain types of cancer, owing to immunotherapy or targeted therapies, an understanding of the action mechanisms of the treatments, and the ability to predict their effects. 

While the overall findings are extremely positive, the extraordinary complexity of cancer diseases is merely determined more tangibly, hence the exploration of the multiple sources brought to light must be pursued.