Innovative approach to cancer research holds the promise of introducing novel therapies and
more effective treatment for patients


Montreal, February 18th, 2014 – The Quebec – Clinical Research Organization in Cancer (Q-CROC) was awarded a $9.2 million investment from the Quebec government over four years as part of the Fonds de partenariat pour un Québec innovant et en santé (FPQIS). This public-private partnership was formally announced on February 14th, 2014 by Mr. Nicolas Marceau, the Quebec Minister of Finance and Economy. Private partners from the pharmaceutical industry and SMEs are providing matching funds, for a total investment of $18.4 million.

The molecular profiling and biomarker discovery of the individual genetic structures and activities within cancerous tumours is revolutionizing cancer diagnostics and treatment by redefining different cancers as groups of rare sub-diseases, each with their own distinctive molecular signatures. This approach explains why cancer drugs do not have the same effectiveness on all patients.

Q-CROC strives to pair each patient with an optimal treatment based on his or her cancer subtype—a notion known as personalized medicine. Patients have a higher probability for a successful outcome when tumour-specific molecular profiles are targeted. To this end, Q-CROC will work very closely with the newly created Centre of Excellence PreThera Research, towards the creation of a clinical and molecular database. These activities will be synergized with those of the Partnership for Personalized Medicine in Cancer, in which Q-CROC and many of its partners are already actively involved.

Q-CROC is a non-profit organization that was founded as a partnership between Dr. Gerald Batist of the Lady Davis Institute (LDI) at the Jewish General Hospital and Dr. Luc Bélanger of the CHU de Québec. This multi-disciplinary and multi-institutional research network is world-renowned for its expertise, bringing together acclaimed physicians and researchers throughout the province of Quebec. Q-CROC has established both national and global collaborations, as well as several partnerships with leaders from the pharmaceutical industry and SMEs. Besides those affiliated with the LDI, teams involved in this initiative are located all across the province, at institutions such as the university health networks of McGill, Laval, Montreal, and Sherbrooke.

Q-CROC’s mission is to significantly improve the anti-cancer drug development ecosystem, to multiply patient treatment options, and to reduce the financial burden on the health care system through, in part, improvement of the clinical research infrastructure in Quebec and the establishment of molecular tumour profiling. This inherently transformative and innovative initiative will contribute to the development of groundbreaking personalized therapies and will ensure their accessibility to as many cancer patients as possible.

February 18, 2014