Siric > Research > Translational Research

Translational Research Unit – TRU


The Translational Research Unit has been created by the ICM in 2013 in order to centralize translational activities.

The first expertise of the URT is the work on human biological specimens. Particularly, URT can select i) the cohort of patient of interest based on clinical criteria through the analysis of the computerized medical record, ii) tumour material by using macrodissection or microdissection starting from FFPE specimens.

The second field of expertise is the analysis of nucleic acids coming from challenging clinical samples. Various methodologies to detect germline polymorphisms or somatic mutations have been implemented as for example: screening approaches such as high resolution melting, or targeted technologies such as pyrosequencing or droplet digital PCR. Quantitative analysis of nucleic acids can be performed based on the reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction or the multiplex ligation probe assay. Epigenetic analyses such as determination of methylation profiles are also carried out.

URT has also an expertise in mass spectrometry. Particularly, this approach is used for protein identification and quantification (ABSCiex Triple Tof 5600 and Advion LESA). Immunohistochemistry (IHC) is also mastered with more than 130 antibodies validated and IHC optimization can be performed for commercially available or custom antibodies.  Finally, thanks to a partnership with a diagnosis company, URT has an expertise in time resolved fluorescence energy transfer (TR-FRET) and developed assays for the qualitative analysis of nucleic acids, the characterization of protein/protein (dimerization profiles) or protein/nucleic acid interaction.

The main missions of the URT are:

  • to propose and perform translational research projects validated by the internal committee of translational research, within the framework of a collaboration or under a service delivery,
  • to propose and perform ancillary studies validated by the internal committee of clinical research,
  • to monitor technological developments to increase its fields of expertise.

Located on the ICM campus, the URT benefits from a dynamic research environment favorable to interaction between clinicians and researchers.

See also: translationnelle

Manager: Evelyne Crapez:

URT implements projects validated by the ICM’s Translational Research Committee (CORT). The CORT is responsible for evaluating and validating all requests for translational research projects from clinicians, researchers, public or private organizations. This committee is made up of members representing the different players in translational research at the ICM and the IRCM and meets on average once a month.

Head of the CORT: Pr William Jacot:

Biological Resources Centres – BRC


Biological resources are valuable tools for researchers to study the molecular and genetic characteristics of tumours. Supporting and facilitating access to biological resources is at the heart of the Montpellier SIRIC strategy that aims to increase the cancer research capacity and contribute significantly to the development of personalised medicine.


The oncology BRC at ICM allows direct access to specific biological materials from clinically-well defined cohorts of cancer patients, for an efficient link between bioresources and associated clinical data. The BRC is made up of two cryopreservation units:

  •    A tissue bank for the management of tumour and no tumour tissue samples (approximately 65% and 20% of the collection are breast and gastrointestinal tumours, respectively) and derived products (DNA, RNA, tissue chips) (Dr MC. Chateau).
  •    A biobank for the conservation of blood products (serum, plasma, constitutional DNA) as well as other biological fluids (urine, drain liquids …)

The BRC is certified under the NFS quality norm 96-900 since 2014.

The BRC is involved in ancillary studies associated to European and national clinical trials: e.g. i) REQUITE programme aimed at validating predictive models and biomarkers of radiotherapy toxicity in breast cancer, ii) NIPOX programme whose purpose is an improvement intraperitoneal carcinomatosis management. The BRC works in close collaboration with the ICM Translational Research Unit and other academic groups. In addition, BRC has industrial partnerships for biomarker discovery and implements collections with special specimens (e.g. ascites).

See also:

Contact : Dr Jean-Pierre Bleuse, Coordonnateur of BRC-ICM :

BRC- CHU Montpellier

The BRC of the University Hospital of Montpellier is a platform of human biological resources management that is positioned at the interface between research and health care. The general purpose is to organize and unite the biological collections of the University Hospital of Montpellier, pooling tools and skills for the management, processing, preservation and provision of resources. All of its activities are carried out for the benefit of academic and / or industrial research.

Since its creation in 2006, the BRC is structured around seven distinct thematics that can make available tissues (frozen, fresh, paraffin …), biological fluids and cells, but also derivatives such as DNA, RNA. Two clinical themes are emblematic among BRC collections: oncology (cerebral tumours, lung cancer, hematology) and neurological degenerative disease (dementia).

The BRC is certified under the NFS quality norm 96-900 since June 2015.

See also:

Contact : Nathalie Coux, Project Manager:

Clinical and Biological Databases


Biological resources are a valuable tool for researchers to study the molecular and genetic characteristics of tumours.

Supporting and promoting access to biological resources and the implementation of perfectly annotated BCBs is at the heart of SIRIC Montpellier Cancer’s strategy, which aims to increase cancer research capacities and make a significant contribution to the development of personalized medicine.

Colon-LR Collection

Under the research program dedicated to colorectal cancer, the Montpellier SIRIC coordinates a regional network for the collection of pre-neoplastic and neoplastic colonic tissue. The constitution of the Colon-LR clinico-biological base aims to facilitate access to colonic tissue samples associated with clinical, biological and epidemiological data for the scientific and medical community. The target is to accelerate the development of preclinical and translational projects that will ultimately lead to a better understanding of colonic tumorigenesis and metastasis dissemination mechanisms.

A first tumor microarray (TMA) was constituted from 46 patients with pre-neoplastic lesions and different stages of the disease.

How to get samples?

The BCB Colon-LR data and biological material transfer occurs after validation of a research project by the Coordinating Committee of the Colorectal Cancer Program of the SIRIC and the scientific committees of the Biological Resource Centres at the ICM or the University Hospital in Montpellier.

More information:

The ICM collections

The CRB-ICM has tissue and biological resources related to the pathologies treated at the ICM, in particular breast, colon and ovarian cancers and sarcomas.

Quality controls of biological resources are carried out throughout the treatment process:

  • histological control of tissue samples
  • quality control of DNA and RNA derivative products
  • control of storage conditions.

Patients are informed about the use of their biological resources and give their consent before samples are taken for research purposes.

How to get samples?

All requests to make biological resources available must be submitted to the decision of the Translational Research Committee (CORT) of the ICM.

More information:

Collections of the University Hospital of Montpellier

The BRC of the University Hospital of Montpellier has biological resources in a number of areas including cells (Head: J Moreaux) and a tumor library (Head: V Rigau). Some themes are certified according to the NFS 96-900 standard. The catalogue of biological resources offered by the BRC of the CHU of Montpellier is available on the CHU of Montpellier website.

For more information: