- Create a multidisciplinary network of academic researchers in preclinical and translational oncology, clinical oncologists, pathologists, biostatisticians and bioinformaticians with a common goal of harnessing clinically relevant models of cancer, and in particular PDXs, and avoiding duplication of efforts. The network displays a wide range of expertise in technological platforms (e.g. NGS, molecular imaging...);
- Share PDX models and harmonise characterisation and annotation of the models in a common database implemented for the Consortium collection;
- Elucidate standard operating procedures and harmonise working practices for implementation of PDX models, biobanking, biostatistics, protocol design and logistics for multicentre xenopatient trials, data analyses and reporting, with the goal to improve the reproducibility and predictability of preclinical and co-clinical studies;
- Perform research programs aiming in particular at i) a better characterisation of the models, ii) the development of new methodologies to overcome current limits of PDXs (e.g. humanisation strategies), iii) the implementation of new models in specific cancer subtypes to increase the representativeness of the collection, metastatic models or models resistant to standard therapies, iv) the development of complementary models for integration in innovative preclinical screening strategies (e.g. ex vivo 2D and 3D assays with PDX-derived primary cell cultures), v) the identification of new targets and novel therapeutic strategies for overcoming drug resistance, and vi) the discovery of predictive biomarkers for targeted therapies;
- Perform proof-of-concept collaborative multicentre and multipathology xenopatient preclinical trials for novel anticancer drugs or combinatorial strategies, within molecularly-defined tumour subsets and on a population scale, using the standards agreed, as a prelude for prospective clinical trials in humans. The Consortium will also perform co-clinical trials;
- Make publicly available as much as possible the results and data obtained from the work performed, to further reduce duplication of efforts within the scientific community;
- Teach young researchers state-of-the-art techniques related to PDX models and preclinical drug development;
- Participate in the improvement of the drug development process in oncology through more predictive preclinical and co-clinical studies, and ultimately contribute to the approval of new and effective therapeutic strategies for cancer patients.
The Consortium is working on a collaborative spirit, between EurOPDX members but also with other academic institutions, pharmas and biotechs, and is not intended at performing any fee for service activities.