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Genother Biocluster: Accelerating the development of gene therapy drugs in France 

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ADN Helice

The Genother biocluster, dedicated to accelerating the development of gene therapy drugs, of which Genethon is one of the founders, is one of the 5 winners of the France 2030 call for expressions of interest. This labelling, announced on 16 May by the French President, will strengthen France's leadership in the field of gene therapy, one of the most dynamic areas of biomedical research.

During his visit to the Institut Curie on 16 May, Emmanuel Macron announced the labelling of 12 new university hospital institutes and 4 new bioclusters, including Genother. This marks a major step in the creation of a unique ecosystem in Europe to meet the scientific, technological, and economic challenges of gene therapy.

"For thirty years, we have been taking up the challenge of gene therapy: we finance hundreds of researchers in this field in France and abroad, we have created a dedicated R&D laboratory, Genethon, and a bioproduction platform, Yposkesi. Gene therapy is now experiencing a real acceleration: 24 drugs have been approved in the United States and Europe. Many of them are the result of innovative French research, but almost all of them were developed abroad due to the lack of a favourable ecosystem, weakening their availability to patients. The labelling of Genother, driven by our laboratory Genethon, finally responds to the desire, fiercely supported by our association for nearly a decade, to have the means to develop and market these innovative medicines in France. This biocluster allows France to have the basis of a sector of excellence from fundamental research to the provision of treatments. This is a major asset for securing our country's health independence and creating thousands of skilled jobs in this sector at a time when we know that 20% of new medicines by 2025 will be derived from gene therapy," said Laurence Tiennot-Herment, President of AFM-Téléthon.

Bringing together public and private players, with a network of more than 35 academic institutions, manufacturers, biotech companies, SMEs, investment funds, universities, and Grandes Ecoles, this new biocluster dedicated to gene therapy will attract the best talent and accelerate the emergence of R&D projects whose ambition is to make dozens of new gene therapies available for rare and common diseases over the next 10 years.

Genother's labelling is part of the "Innovation santé 2030 (Health Innovation 2030)” plan, which is part of the "France 2030" recovery plan.  Following this announcement of 12 new UHIs and 4 bioclusters (in addition to the 7 research programmes and the first biocluster already launched, and the 7 UHIs already in operation), a new call for projects to create chairs of excellence to attract and retain top-level researchers in France has also been launched.

Read more:
- The Genethon press release