Inserm Transfert and Inserm: a unique knowledge transfer model

The French Institute of Health and Medical Research (Inserm) has developed a unique model for technology transfer through Inserm Transfert, its subsidiary in charge of de-risking innovative preclinical projects and bridging discovery and clinical research. To download the full article, please sign in.

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Inserm Transfert

Inserm’s generation of new potential target and biomarker discoveries for drugs and diagnostics is among the highest in Europe for all disease classes, both common and rare. A crowning example is the discovery of cytotoxic T lymphocyte–associated protein 4 (CTLA4), the target of Bristol-Myers Squibb’s Yervoy (ipilimumab), a monoclonal antibody used to treat cancer. Inserm is also among the most prolific institutions in Europe when it comes to filing biopharma patents and publishing scientific papers. Over the past 50 years, the institute has grown into a 15,000-person organization that spans all French territories and is largely built around university hospitals. By pairing this geographic reach with a translational approach to R&D that combines clinical and basic biological research with a keen vision of knowledge transfer, Inserm has created a unique ecosystem for innovation with its technology transfer subsidiary, Inserm Transfert, at the epicenter. These characteristics support Inserm’s drive to streamline the discovery of new molecular and cellular targets for therapeutics and diagnostics. Their effectiveness was demonstrated during the 2014 Ebola outbreak, when Inserm sampled, sequenced and analyzed the virus in 30 days. This work determined that the Guinean virus was a variant not found in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Gabon. Furthermore, thanks to their clinical network and expertise, Inserm and Toyoma Chemical (Fujifilm Group) were able to present initial findings on an Ebola treatment at this year’s Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections in Seattle, Washington, USA. When applied to other therapeutic areas such as oncology, the central nervous system (CNS), immunology and metabolic diseases, the Inserm approach is equally effective.

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