The researchers work closely with University Hospitals Leuven, colleagues from UCL in Woluwe and AZ Groeninge in Kortrijk. The project is also part of the European consortium EurOPDX and works on a project basis with individual centres. Our researchers invest in international cooperation because it is crucial to advancing the field of personalised medicine. Some adaptations in genetic material are very rare, making access to tissue samples crucial. This can only be achieved through the exchange of tissue samples between international partners.

Professor Sabine Tejpar, a digestive oncology specialist, helped lay the foundations for Leuven's Tumour Xenograft Project: "In the PDTX platform we are currently studying nine different tumour types, each of which has different subtypes. We want to expand this platform to include more tumour types from various fields and we are also eager to analyse very rare tumour types. In order to make this happen, we rely on broad cooperation with as many cancer researchers as possible, both at home and abroad, but we must also deploy additional staff and resources.”

A sample of each piece of implanted tumour is also preserved at -80°C in a biobank. A biobank is a library of tissue samples. A portion of these samples is used for genetic research within the Xenograft Project, and a portion is set aside for future research.