Funded Research

The Fondation pour la Recherche Médicale selects and supports innovative research projects that promise to  advance knowledge of all diseases.
But research is a long-term endeavor, and it may take many years before it results in visible human health benefits. To objectively measure the effectiveness of its support in the short and longer term, the FRM devotes part of its activities to assessing the impact of its efforts. In 2020, researchers supported by the FRM produced 1,090 scientific publications.


Cancer is a consequence of a dysfunction in the body’s cells: uncontrolled cell growth results in the formation of tumors.
In 2017, it is estimated that there were 399,500 new cases of cancer in France, and that it caused nearly 150,000 deaths. Today, one out of two patients is cured of cancer, but the prognosis is variable from one patient to another: it depends on the affected tissue, the stage of the cancer at the time of diagnosis, the presence or absence of metastasis and the genetics of the patient, among other factors.

The aim of research is to further improve on this figure, particularly through personalized treatments, which take into account the specific characteristics of each patient and each tumor, but also through the development of increasingly effective screening techniques.
399 500
new cases of cancer in France in 2017

Neurological diseases

Neurological diseases are pathologies that affect the central (brain and spinal cord) or peripheral nervous system. Thus, this term includes various conditions, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, etc.

Finding new therapeutic strategies and developing innovative diagnostic tools is essential today.
It will become increasingly important to address certain neurological diseases in the future: the aging of the population in France and in other developed countries will expose more and more patients to neurodegenerative pathologies, particularly Alzheimer’s disease.
In addition, many neurological diseases are still incurable and responsible for severe disabilities.

Aging populations will expose more and more patients to neurodegenerative pathologies.


Cardiovascular diseases

Cardiovascular diseases include pathologies that affect the heart and blood vessels, such as atherosclerosis, heart arrhythmia, high blood pressure, myocardial infarction, heart failure and stroke. Today, research is advancing on all fronts to treat these conditions: markers for early detection, innovative treatments like new anticoagulants that prevent the formation of clots in the arteries and artificial hearts are among the many new successes in the field.


Infectious diseases

Infectious diseases are caused by the transmission of a pathogen, such as bacteria, viruses, parasites, prions and fungi. They therefore cover a broad spectrum of benign pathologies, such as colds and sore throats, but also very serious illnesses, such as AIDS, hepatitis, malaria and tuberculosis. While research has eradicated some of them through the development of specific vaccines and antibiotics, there is still a long way to go before all of these diseases have been addressed. Today, we are also witnessing an increase in antibiotic resistance, as well as the emergence of new viruses that are still unknown. Research continues in order to develop innovative treatments for these diseases.


Rare diseases

A disease is designated as rare when it affects a small fraction of the population. In Europe, the threshold is set at less than one in 2,000 people. There are about 7,000 rare diseases, including cystic fibrosis, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, progeria and glass bone disease. Eighty percent of rare diseases are of genetic origin. Many of them are also so-called “orphan diseases,” diseases for which there is little or no treatment. Researchers are stepping up their efforts to better understand the causes of these diseases, as well as to develop new treatment methods.


Other diseases

In this section, you will find information and research projects funded by the Fondation pour la Recherche Médicale focused on rheumatological diseases (rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, etc.), vision (age-related macular degeneration, cataracts), skin (psoriasis, etc.), diabetes and obesity. Strong research efforts are being put into these important fields.

Distribution of funding by discipline *

In 2021, the Fondation pour la Recherche Médicale funded 379 new research projects for a total of €48,4 million for all diseases.

*These figures correspond to all research commitments for 2021, after deduction of funding renouncements (partial or total non-use of allocated funding), as of december 31, 2021.

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