Our vice president for immunobiotherapies is :
FOCUS ON : The Nantes University Hospital Institute - the "European Centre for Transplantation Sciences and Immunotherapy” (TSI-IHU). The TSI-IHU project (led by Professor Jean-Paul Soulillou and involving over 1000 staff) is establishing itself as the European leading program in Transplantation Sciences - a high-priority theme in healthcare.
As Europe's busiest centre for kidney transplants (with the 4,000th performed in November 2009) and France's leading pancreas transplant centre and one of the most visible spots in gene and cell therapy in France, the TSI-IHU project combines an intense clinical activity and fundamental and applied research laboratories (5 joint
INRA / University units and many other accredited, Nantes National Veterinary School and university groups) served by the Atlanpole Biotherapies cluster of life sciences companies.
Thanks to a spin-out strategy championed by Nantes University Hospital in collaboration with the Atlanpole Biotherapies cluster, 7 SME or start-ups (6 biotech companies – TcLand Expression, Clean Cells, TcL Pharma, Cytune Pharma, Affilogic, and In Cell Art – and one e-healthcare ICT company – IDBC/A2Com) have been founded on the intellectual property generated by TSI-IHU clinicians and researchers. These companies have also joined the IHU project and offer unique opportunities for research exploitation and transfer to the clinic. Other companies, such as Vivalis, which have been incubated in an TSI-IHU UMR with a strong theme coherence, have also joined the project. Important partnerships are developed with large SME (“Groupe Grimaud”, LFB) and several international pharmaceutical companies.
• Vaccination against tumors:
We offer a cross disciplinary approach in tumor vaccination, including academic & clinical research and industries. Possibilities include peptide or oligonucleotide drug development, and cell therapy approaches with TIL (Tumor infiltrating lymphocytes), CTL (Cytotoxic T lymphocytes) or dendritic cells.
• Transplantation and auto-immune / inflammatory diseases:
The University Hospital of Nantes reached more than 4000 kidney or kidney/pancreas transplantations in 2010, highlighting the work of the specific institute of transplantation ITUN and making it the European leader in that area.
Companies (including spin off from the research laboratory) are now working on the development of therapeutics aimed at establishing and reinforcing immune regulation. Specific collaborative R&D program developing a CD28 antagonist to obtain long lasting tolerance transplantation is also ongoing.