AURAGEN, genome-sequencing platform at very high speed

Published on 07-18-2017
This program principally involves cancer patients to whom new therapeutic strategies can be provided, including targeted therapies depending on identified variations.

AURAGEN is the very high speed sequencing platform project, a health-based project built by the Auvergne Rhône-Alpes region within the plan France Médecine Génomique 2025. It will allow entering the era of genomic medicine with a more personalized diagnostic and therapeutic care, thanks to the routine sequencing of individual genomes.

Specifically, the nature and the chaining order of the genes composing each person’s DNA are entirely analyzed to determine the risks of developing several diseases, to adapt treatments depending on the patient and to anticipate their reactions to medicinal products.

Very high speed sequencing allows the observation of genetic variations from which cancers or other rare diseases may arise. Analyses are prescribed by doctors from the different health establishments belonging to the consortium and treated at Hôpital Edouard Herriot with a test from Eurofins-Biomnis. Results will be delivered within two weeks. Data extracted from these analyses will be processed, conserved and studied by bioinformatics platforms in Lyon and Grenoble. Despite the help it gives to diagnosis and treatment, it will make our understanding progress by identifying new variations that could lead to new care protocols and diagnostic tests.

The goal is to treat 18 000 genomes per year in 2019.

14 partners involved for precision medicine

AURAGEN is supported by a Consortium, composed by a health cooperation group (Groupement de coopération sanitaire AURAGEN in French) with the 4 University Hospitals of the region (CHU de Clermont-Ferrand, CHU Grenoble Alpes, Hospices Civils de Lyon et CHU de Saint-Etienne), 2 Cancer Centers (Centre Jean Perrin and Centre Léon Bérard), and a Cancerology Institute (Institut de Cancérologie de la Loire Lucien-Neuwirth). Despite the GCS and its institutions, the consortium gathers Universities : Claude Bernard Lyon 1, Université de Grenoble-Alpes, Université Jean Monnet de Saint-Etienne, Université de Clermont Auvergne as well as Ecole des Mines de Saint Etienne and Fondation Synergie Lyon Cancer. An industrial partner, the Eurofins-Biomnis company, European leader of specialized medical biology, completes the consortium.

The program pilotes

The science officer of AURAGEN project is Pr Jean-Yves Blay, from Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1, executive director of Centre Léon Bérard and director of the Integrated site of cancer research (SIRIC, Site intégré de recherche sur le cancer in French) of Lyon, the LYric.

The sequencing platform will be controlled by Pr Damien Sanlaville, geneticist and head of the genetic service of Hospices Civils de Lyon.

Devices and staff of the sequencing platform will be located at Hopital Edouard Herriot, in 500 m2 premises given by Hospices Civils de Lyon. Operational management will be co-held between Hospices Civils de Lyon and Eurofins-Biomnis.

Sequencing data will be transmitted to a high performance calculation center AURAGEN, coordinated by CHU Grenoble Alpes. Bioinformatics and reference tools will be coordinated by Centre Léon Bérard for cancers and by CHU Grenoble for constitutional diseases.

The GCS will be administrated by Stéphanie Fazi-Leblanc, vice executive director of CHU Grenoble Alpes.

All of these Consortium partners, whether they are hospitals, industrials, scientists and universities, are closely involved in the processes set up for inhabitants of Auvergne Rhône Alpes.

AURAGEN program is an ambitious project, federating, gathering all academic and medical strengths of Auvergne Rhône Alpes that are dedicated to cancer and rare pathologies, as well as the expertise of a major European industrial medical biology.

The platform will offer very high speed sequencing to entities involved in cancerology and in caring nationally rare pathologies, thanks to an industrial process allowing facing the high amount of patients and of data required.

It will lean on the experience of AURAGEN members in major clinical research projects in genomic medicine, and on international experts guarantying an optimal use of data for patients and an excellent education of the key actors of the sector.