his symposium gathers talented scientists and people to update us on new findings and in the field of cancer research there are so many that we need to be updated. This allows us to know, understand better, what are the discoveries and so when we, in our mission, want to cure people also prepare our minds to translate all those research discoveries into new therapeutic solutions.
Why is it important for the ARC Foundation to be a part of this?
In fact we are part of the WIN consortium because that’s the consortium gathering many actors from academia to industry, charity, health payers, so being together, talking about and thinking about innovation helps us to set strategic steps towards reality.
Could you tell us a little about the ARC Foundation and the work you do?
Our foundation has been created since fifty years and the mission has been always the same, it’s prevent and cure cancer through research. So we mainly support French researchers from fundamental to clinical research through translational, biology, clinical, epidemiological results.
What are the cancers you’re looking to cure by 2025 and do you think you’ll succeed?
In fact, all these new findings have allowed us to cure today one cancer out of two. Ten to fifteen years ago it was only one out of three. So we are in a very positive dynamic and we believe, we are convinced, that by all our efforts we can reach two out of three being cured. It’s obvious that this is a number but it would not have the same result for all the cancers. Unfortunately there are still cancers extremely difficult to cure but the range is from more than 80% to less than 20%. What we want is to go from 80% to 90% and from 20% increase to 40-50%.
Can you summarise the research and activities of the foundation?
We are involved in four areas: one, fundamental biology and we have three strategic domains we want to develop. One is about personalised medicine, the other is research into prevention and the third is new technologies. Why personalised medicine? Because we understand that now through targeted therapy we know who can respond, not respond, so it represents a major improvement. Why research and prevention? Because we know already that almost 40% of new cases can be evitable, we can prevent 40% of new cases. It’s a major improvement we could reach. Number three: the new technologies from imaging to surgery and we support partnerships in those areas.
How does the foundation relate to the ‘four Ps’ of cancer?
We believe that it’s not only a matter of science curing cancer, it’s also a matter of a global vision around the patient. The patient is at the centre; we want to understand the biological mechanisms but also we want to have an impact on overall survival and also on the quality of life. The patient can be also an actor, a key actor, of his way from good health and maintained good health.
Why are initiatives like the WIN consortium so important?
The WIN symposium and the WIN consortium is key because, to me, there are reasons such as innovation, being together and accelerating. WIN, for me, is summarised through these three words. Innovation, because since a decade there is a huge amount of new discovery, genomics and so on, so with a great hope. Number two: if we want to accelerate the translation of this discovery to the benefit of the patient to the clinic we have to be together and WIN gather from academia up to industrial, all stakeholders being able to together have an impact towards the results.
What will you be taking home from WIN?
I take motivation, I take new ideas and commitment to our mission, to see how people from various countries are today, and I believe, much more prepared than before to really work together to one unique goal – cure cancer.