Integrated Medicine for Sarcomas

About the programme

A sarcoma is a malignant tumour arising from connective tissue, including muscle and bone tissues. These tissues account for two-thirds of the volume of the human body and play a role in providing support, protection and nutrition, binding, tissue repair, movement, immune response, growth and storage. Sarcomas are a rare type of cancer – approximately 1% of diagnoses – and affect all ages. Although recent progress in molecular biology and genetics have helped to clarify their classification, their diagnosis and treatment currently remain problematic. Current targeted therapies and chemotherapies do not provide lasting results.

IMS (Integrated Medicine for Sarcomas), based on the recognised expertise of the Bordeaux teams, is a multidisciplinary programme enabling researchers in genetics, preclinical development, psychology, sociology and epidemiology to work in synergy to improve care management for these cancers.

IMS is an ambitious programme aimed at improving outcomes of sarcoma treatments through a multidimensional approach including :

  • Clinical research in genomics and data integration to improve knowledge of tumour biology and evaluate the outcomes of new therapies
  • Preclinical studies to identify new therapeutic targets
  • Psychology and sociology research to assess the consequences of diagnosis at patient and societal levels
  • Epidemiological research to improve the assessment of environmental exposure for better understanding of the environmental etiology of sarcomas

Antoine Italiano, Carlo Lucchesi, Francois Le Loarer and Simone Mathoulin-Pelissier jointly coordinate all the research for the IMS programme within BRIO, in constant cooperation with the programme manager. They define the programme’s major strategic preclinical and clinical research fields, in accordance with the budget as well as the medical and competitive environment. They co-host the programme’s biannual progress meetings as well as the meetings to prepare for the international Scientific Advisory Board (SAB).

Within the framework of the IMS programme, several clinical studies are underway:

* Filipo (phase IV): impact of anti-eGFR treatment in patients with liposarcoma (NCT03303885), evaluating the effect of an anti-EGFR treatment in liposarcoma patients

*Access* (prospective sample collection of sarcoma patients)

*Etiosarc (phase IV): environmental etiology of sarcoma (NCT03670927)

* Pembrosarc (phase II): advanced sarcoma (NCT02406781)

* Pembrotaz to evaluate effectiveness of combining several treatments

*Multisarc (phase II, NCT03784014)

* Congrats (phase II, NCT04095208)

All the studies are available on the clinical trials website:

Research teams

Sarcoma Specialists: The Sarcoma Unit includes an interdisciplinary team of medical specialists, nurses and health professionals, all of whom have special interest and international experience in the management of this rare disease. This unit has special expertise in all aspects of symptom diagnosis, treatment and control to ensure effective, efficient and user-friendly service. The IB sarcoma unit manages a stream of clinical trials dedicated to sarcomas. These tests are of all types, from phase 0 to phase 3.

Staff of the Sarcomas Unit: Head of Unit Pr. Antoine Italiano, Consultant in Medical Oncology
Surgeons Dr. Eberhard Stoeckle, Consultant in Surgical Oncology; Dr. Audrey Michot, Consultant in Surgical Oncology
Pathologist Jean-Michel Coindre, Consultant in Histopathology; Dr. François le Loarer, histopathology consultant
Radiologist Dr. Michèle Kind, radiology consultant; Dr. Amandine Crombe, consultant radiologist
Medical oncology Pr Antoine Italiano, consultant on medical oncology; Dr. Sophie Cousin, consultant on medical oncology; Dr. Maud Toulmonde, consultant on medical oncology

Bioinformatics team: Carlo Lucchesi is the bioinformatics team leader of the Institut Bergonié, which is responsible for the analysis of all sequencing data.

Psychology: Marion Barrrault is a psychologist specializing in Oncology Support Care at the Institut Bergonié. His activity is notably based on mindfulness meditation to improve to improve the quality of life in patients with cancer.

Consult the website of the Institut Bergonié

BRIO referrals: Dr. François Le Loarer (Anatomo-Cyto-pathologist, Inserm U1218, Bergonié Institute) – Pr. Antoine Italiano (Director of the Early Testing Unit at the Bergonié Institute, Professor of Oncology, Institut Bergonié)

Expertise: Translational Research

The Inserm Unit U1218 ACTION relies on its integration into the Bergonié Institute to develop translational research through its fundamental researchers in connection with the clinical teams. Three themes are developed:

SARCOTARGET TEAM: Sensitivity and resistance to sarcomas,

MLO TEAM: Genetic diversity and treatment response: mammary and leukemic oncogenesis

VINTAGE TEAM: Validation and Identification of New Cancer and Aging Targets. Each of these groups has biological and clinical assets that will enable them to complete their projects. Located in a Cancer Control Center with privileged access to tumor samples and clinical data and well integrated in the university context, this unit has the resources needed to develop a competitive research at French and European level.

BRIO referee: Rodrigue Rossignol (Research Director, Cellomet CEO, Inserm U1211, University of Bordeaux)

Expertise: Metabolism

This team has recognized international expertise in the study of energy metabolism in physiology and pathology. Rodrigue Rossignol is also CEO of Cellomet, a CRO technology platform dedicated to the study of metabolic remodeling triggered by tumor development, drug resistance and anticancer drug activity. At the preclinical stage, the team is developing precision bioenergetic medicine strategies for lung cancer that combine the inhibition of molecular oncology targets with the bioenergetic stratification of tumors. CELLOMET provides pharmaceutical companies with services to decipher the metabolic impact and toxicity of various anti-cancer compounds.

To consult the CELLOMET website, click here.

BRIO referee: Olivier Saut (Research Director of the ONCology modeling project “MONC”, CNRS UMR 5251 Mathematical Institute of Bordeaux), Dr Amandine Crombé (Radiologist, CNRS UMR 5251 Mathematical Institute of Bordeaux, Institut Bergonié)

Expertise: Computer modeling, artificial intelligence

The INRIA Monc project team develops new tools for clinical decision support using mathematical modeling and artificial intelligence approaches. The scientific fields mobilized are numerous: mechanistic modeling, scientific computing, data assimilation, image processing, statistical learning and neural networks. It aims to answer the important questions that biologists or doctors ask themselves about the knowledge of the disease, its treatments or its follow-up. The issues addressed are, for example, the study of the interactions of different mechanisms influencing the progression of the disease, the detection or diagnosis of lesions using imaging, or the early evaluation of the efficacy of a treatment.

Référent BRIO : Pr Simone Mathoulin-Pélissier (Professeur en Santé Publique et Épidémiologie, Directrice de l’équipe EPICENE, Inserm U1219, Institut de Santé Publique d’Épidémiologie et de Développement, Université de Bordeaux, Institut Bergonié), Dr Silviane Darquy (Chargée de recherche, Bordeaux Population Health, Inserm Centre 1219, équipe EPICENE, Université de Bordeaux), Pr Isabelle Baldi (Praticienne Hospitalière, Bordeaux Population Health, Inserm UMR1219, équipe EPICENE, Université de Bordeaux), Dr Aude Lacourt (Epidémiologiste, Bordeaux Population Health, UMR 1219, Équipe EPICENE, Institut de Santé Publique d’Épidémiologie et de Développement, Université de Bordeaux), Dr Brice Amadeao (Epidémiologiste, Bordeaux Population Health, UMR 1219, Équipe EPICENE, Institut de Santé Publique d’Épidémiologie et de Développement, Université de Bordeaux), Dr Carine Bellera (Biostatisticienne, Université de Bordeaux), Dr Alain Monnereau (Praticien spécialisé dans la surveillance épidémiologique, Institut Bergonié)

Expertise : Epidémiologie, biostatistiques et expositions environnementales

L’équipe EPICENE développe des recherches sur les relations entre les expositions à des nuisances environnementales et professionnelles avec la survenue de cancers et le pronostic de ces maladies. Par des méthodes épidémiologiques et statistiques innovantes elle étudie la survenue des cancers et le devenir des populations. Par des approches multidisciplinaires, elle développe des méthodes spécifiques pour la mesure des expositions. Les champs de recherche de cette équipe sont :
– Développer et valider des méthodes statistiques permettant d’évaluer le devenir des populations atteintes d’un cancer, notamment la survie.
– Proposer des méthodes pour estimer les expositions individuelles récentes ou sur l’ensemble de la vie à des nuisances environnementales et/ou professionnelles.
– Évaluer le rôle de certaines nuisances environnementales et/ou professionnelles dans la survenue de cancers rares (sarcomes, mésothéliomes, tumeurs du système nerveux central, hémopathies, …).*

Consulter le site internet de Bordeaux Population Health Center

BRIO referee: Pr Simone Mathoulin-Pélissier (Professor of Public Health and Epidemiology, Director of the EPICENE team, Inserm U1219, Institute of Public Health Epidemiology and Development, University of Bordeaux, Bergonié Institute), Dr Silviane Darquy (Chargée de research, Bordeaux Population Health, Inserm Center 1219, EPICENE team, University of Bordeaux), Pr Isabelle Baldi (Hospital Practitioner, Bordeaux Population Health, Inserm UMR1219, EPICENE team, University of Bordeaux), Dr Aude Lacourt (Epidemiologist, Bordeaux Population Health, UMR 1219 , EPICENE Team, Institute of Public Health Epidemiology and Development, University of Bordeaux), Dr Brice Amadeao (Epidemiologist, Bordeaux Population Health, UMR 1219, Team EPICENE, Institute of Public Health Epidemiology and Development, University of Bordeaux) , Dr Carine Bellera (Biostatistician, University of Bordeaux), Dr  Alain Monnereau (Practitioner specialized in epidemiological surveillance, Institut Bergonié)

Expertise: Epidemiology, biostatistics and environmental exposures

The EPICENE team is developing research on the relationship between exposures to environmental and occupational nuisances with the occurrence of cancers and the prognosis of these diseases. Through innovative epidemiological and statistical methods it studies the occurrence of cancer and the future of populations. Through multidisciplinary approaches, she develops specific methods for measuring exposures. The research fields of this team are:

– Develop and validate statistical methods to assess the future of populations with cancer, including survival.

– Propose methods for estimating recent individual or lifetime exposures to environmental and / or occupational nuisances.

– To evaluate the role of certain environmental and / or professional nuisances in the occurrence of rare cancers (sarcomas, mesotheliomas, tumors of the central nervous system, blood disorders, …).

Visit the Bordeaux Population Health Center website

Référent BRIO : Hélène Budzinski (Chimiste de l’environnement, CNRS UMR5805 EPOC, équipe LPTC, Université de Bordeaux)

Expertise : Environnement

L’activité du LPTC concerne l’étude de la présence des transport et transfert inter-compartiments, des phénomènes de bioaccumulation et de biotransformation ainsi que de l’impact des contaminants organiques au niveau moléculaire dans les compartiments environnementaux (air – eau – sol). Les recherches effectuées s’articulent autour des trois axes suivants :
Sources et présence des micropolluants organiques,
Interactions et Transferts.

Consulter le site internet de l’équipe EPOC

BRIO referee: Hélène Budzinski (Environmental Chemist, CNRS UMR5805 EPOC, LPTC team, University of Bordeaux)

Expertise: Environment

The activity of the LPTC concerns the study of the presence of inter-compartmental transport and transfer, bioaccumulation and biotransformation phenomena as well as the impact of organic contaminants at the molecular level in environmental compartments (air – water – soil). The research carried out revolves around the following three axes:

Sources and presence of organic micropollutants,


Interactions and Transfers.

Consult the website of the EPOC team

BRIO referrals: Pr Hervé Fridman (Physician-Immunologist, UMRS 1138, Cordeliers Research Center, Paris), Pr Catherine Sautes-Fridman (Director of the Cancer Immunology and Immunopathology Department, UMRS 1138, Cordeliers Research Center, Paris)

Expertise: Cancer, Immunology, Immunopathology

The relationship between basic research and clinical research is a strong point of the Cordeliers Research Center with innovations in the field of biomarkers, the production of proteins for therapeutic use or endocrine treatments. The team of Catherine Sautes-Fridman directs its work according to several axes:

– Information sciences at the service of personalized medicine,

– Cancer and anti-tumor immunity,

– Complement and diseases,

– Immunology and integrative oncology,

– Immunology and therapeutic immuno-intervention,

– Apoptosis, cancer, immunity,

– Cell death and resistance to treatment in hematological malignancies.

Referee BRIO: Audrey Vezian (Sociologist, CNRS UMR 5206, Ecole Normale Supérieure, Lyon)

Expertise: Sociology of Health

The Triangle laboratory is a multidisciplinary UMR (Mixed Research Unit) grouping a large number of actors with diverse skills (political science, political philosophy, history of political thought and economic thought). The laboratory is structured in 4 specialty areas:

– Public action,

– Politicization and participation,

– Political Thought and Social Sciences,

– Economy: history, institutions, society.

BRIO referee: Sylvain Besle (Sociologist, Inserm UMR 1252 Team Canbios SESSTIM), Emilien Schultz (Sociologist, SESSTIM / Gustave Roussy, University Aix-Marseille / Paris)

Expertise: Sociology of health, access to innovation, care pathway in oncology

The Sociology of Innovations in Cancerology (SINCRO) program developed at Gustave Roussy and in the SESSTIM CANBIOS team studies the influence of innovations on oncology care pathways. As such, several projects are underway on access to therapeutic innovations for adults as well as children and adolescents around the development of precision medicine. These projects, which link patient experience with scientific and technical developments in medicine, are implemented collaboratively with inter-center and inter-SIRIC partners in order to understand the transformations of cancer nationally.

Visit the SESSTIM website


Clinical and translational studies

+ Is There Value in Molecular Profiling of Soft-Tissue Sarcoma?
Current treatment options in oncology, Dec 2018
Italiano A.

+ Trends in Modern Phase 1 Oncology Trials.
The new England journal of medicine, Sep 2018
Italiano A.

+ Targeting ERBB2 mutations in solid tumors: biological and clinical implications.
Journal of hematology and oncology, Jun 2018
Cousin S, et al.

+ Encouraging Trends in Modern Phase 1 Oncology Trials.
The new England journal of medicine, Jun 2018
Chakiba C, et al.

+ Newer therapeutic strategies for soft-tissue sarcomas.
Pharmacology and therapeutics, Aug 2018
Bourcier K, Italiano A.

+ Management of metastatic retroperitoneal sarcoma: a consensus approach from the Trans-Atlantic Retroperitoneal Sarcoma Working Group (TARPSWG).
Annals of oncology , official of the European Society for Medical Oncology, Apr 2018
Trans-Atlantic Retroperitoneal Sarcoma Working Group (TARPSWG).

+ PD-1 inhibition in sarcoma still needs investigation.
The Lancet Oncology, Jan 2018
Toulmonde M, et al.

+ A Retrospective Multicentric Study of Ewing Sarcoma Family of Tumors in Patients Older Than 50: Management and Outcome.
Scientic reports, Dec 2017
Rochefort P, et al.

+ Biology and Management of Undifferentiated Pleomorphic Sarcoma, Myxofibrosarcoma, and Malignant Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumors: State of the Art and Perspectives.
Journal of Clinical Oncology: official journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, Jan 2018
Widemann BC, et al.

+ Olaratumab failure in sarcomas: what are the lessons learned?
European journal of cancer, Jun 2019
Italiano A.

+ Soft-Tissue Sarcomas: Assessment of MRI Features Correlating with Histologic Grade and Patient Outcome.
Radiology, Jun 2019
Crombé A, et al.

+ Pleomorphic Sarcomas: The State of the Art.
Surgical pathology clinic, mar 2019
Carvalho SD, et al.

Human & Social Sciences / Epidemiology / Public Health