The FHU ONCOAGE will develop activities, in order to foster innovation for ageing population and Cancer management and to:
- Improve quality of life, wellbeing, ageing well and equality of services, for EU citizens
- Enable health and care systems sustainability and efficiency through widespread process of innovation
- Enhance economic and job growth through support for business incubation
- Develop high-level clinical and translational research programmes and scientific discoveries
- Reinforce bio banking aspects to improve public-private partnerships through samples delivery and scientific collaborative projects
- Enhance and accelerate research processes from research to market and development of products and services
- Deliver innovative products and services to citizens
- Create opportunities for the 1st societal challenge in Europe identified in the Horizon 2020 agenda
In order to improve the care of patients suffering age-related diseases (with an initial focus on lung, head and neck and neuromuscular disorders as pathologies models) the FHU ONCOAGE will have the following objectives:
- Define comprehensively, at the cell and molecular level, the nature, timing and robustness of human epithelial cell senescence mechanisms and pathways that act as gatekeepers in human cancer development (including genome instability and telomerase activation) and that may contribute to cellular/organismal ageing;
- Understand inflammation-related cancers including invasive squamous cell carcinomas and adenocarcinomas;
- Decipher the stromal mechanisms that synergize with malignant epithelial cells during cancer progression;
- Exploit novel human cell assays for the detection of environmental epigenetic (non-genotoxic) carcinogens (to facilitate cancer preventative strategies), and finally;
- Apply the improved understanding of senescence and genome stability pathways to the identification of novel anti-cancer targets, and ageing biomarkers;
- Develop evidence-based multi-dimensional clinical interventions, from the hospital environment to home.
For this purpose, the FHU ONCOAGE gathers outstanding clinicians of the CHU of Nice consulting and treating patients with rare accelerated ageing syndromes including mitochondria disease, ALS, FSHD and others and also with common age-related chronic diseases like COPD/PID. These clinicians will establish a strong trans-disciplinary network with researchers working on the mechanisms of the ageing process in order to gain new scientific insights with a direct clinical perspective. This will be boosted by the establishment of a trans-disciplinary platform of analysis combining molecular, (epi) genomic, immunological, cellular, histological and clinical characterization of samples from patients suffering of rare disease and age-related chronic diseases. Adding to the ageing challenge, this also fits with the societal need for better and more just care by raising awareness of physicians, policy makers, and the general public towards the small and dispersed community of patients suffering from rare diseases by the demonstration that the development of new therapies for patients suffering of rare genetic diseases can also facilitate new treatments for widespread age-related diseases.
Thanks to the FHU ONCOAGE, currently dispersed highly-ranked research and clinicians teams developing innovations independently, will be able to join their strengths and their knowledge, providing:
- A comprehensive understanding of ageing process and related diseases;
- The creation of large patients cohorts (with multi-disciplines parameters) and huge enrolments capacities in clinical trials, requested for translational research;
- The design of innovative educational and training programme, involving several fields and matters;
- An attractive environment, with critical mass of high-level researchers, for industry and talents across the world favourable for advanced research and discoveries, but as well generating strong impacts for economic growth and creation of jobs;
- An efficient framework to transfer research results to the day-to-day care pathways and routine interventions, thanks to assessment capacities (trials, living-lab tests) and to the connection of the FHU ONCOAGE with its Ecosystem.