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Equipe The PIONeeR Project

Better understand, predict & overcome anti-PD1(L1) resistance in lung cancer patients and beyond

A major international research project in lung cancer

Immunotherapy is becoming a game-changer in the treatment of cancers, including one of the most serious: non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC). However to date, only 20% of these patients respond favorably to the first available immune-modulating antibodies: PD-1(L1) immune checkpoint inhibitors.

On the initiative of french immunology biocluster, Marseille Immunopôle, Aix-Marseille Université (AMU)Inserm and CNRS, three of their research (CIMLCRCM) and technology (CIPHE,) centers, Assistance Publique Hôpitaux de Marseille (AP-HM), Gustave Roussy, the Centre Léon Berard in Lyon (CLB), Hopitaux de Toulouse, the biotech company ImCheck Therapeutics, the two French leaders in immuno-oncology Innate Pharma (therapeutic) et Veracyte (diagnostic) and one of the worldwide leaders in the field, the biopharmaceutical group AstraZeneca, have joined forces to better understand, predict and overcome these resistances.

Winner of the 3rd University-Hospital Research in Health call for projects in the “France 2030” program, this major international research project, called The Pioneer Project, was launched in November 2017. This 7-year project is coordinated by Fabrice BARLESI, Professor of Medicine at Université Paris-Saclay, CEO of Gustave Roussy Institute and co-founder of the French cluster Marseille Immunopôle.

* Precision Immuno-Oncology for advanced Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Patients with PD1(L1) ICI Resistance.

** Initially a 5-year project. Extension period granted, notably linked to the Covid crisis.



  • 2555 days

  • 3 countries

  • more than 100 scientists

  • 8 research labs

  • 17 hospitals

  • 25,510,000€ including 8,502,000€ of NRA funding

RHU COORDINATOR: Aix-Marseille Université

CLINICAL TRIAL SPONSOR : Assistance Publique Hôpitaux de Marseille

PROJECT INITIATOR : Marseille Immunopole

DIRECTION : Prof. Fabrice BARLESI (Université Paris-Saclay, Institut Gustave Roussy)

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