Since 2003, France has chosen to make a commitment to the fight against cancer as a national public health priority, resulting in the creation of a dedicated agency, INCa (French National Cancer Institute), officially assigned the task of coordinating the fight and in charge of preparing and implementing the French government’s cancer control strategies.
In the field of Research and Innovation, the first two Cancer Plans made a major contribution to mobilizing and structuring the scientific and medical community in order to carry out research projects of excellence and develop the multidisciplinary and translational approach.
Within that context, INCa introduced a competitive policy for accrediting Integrated Cancer Research Sites: SIRICs. These structures brings together medical services, multidisciplinary research teams (clinical, biological, technological, epidemiological, human, economic and social sciences and public health) on a single site, as well as high-performance joint services and resources, which together make it possible to conduct research programmes in an integrated mode. That integration is defined by sharing research questions and objectives between the different fields in order to jointly develop synergistic programmes with the ultimate goal of providing better care management for cancer patients.
Following a call for applications in April 2017, and the evaluation of the applications by an international committee, eight SIRICs were accredited for five years.
SIRICs have a three-fold mission: integration, structuring and transfer.
They develop and conduct a defined number of specific integrated research programmes, carried out within a national and international collaborative network.
They set up the required conditions, in terms of infrastructure and resources, to conduct research meeting the expected criteria of excellence, innovation, integration, multidisciplinary approaches and transfer (technological platforms, research support structures, attractiveness for new researchers, etc.).
Lastly, they ensure the application, development and dissemination of the findings and know-how acquired.
SIRICs are funded by the Ministry of Health, INCa and Inserm via the Cancer Plan. The funding amounts to €6 million for each SIRIC for the five-year period.