Seeding Microsystems in Medicine in Lille – European-Japanese Technologies against Cancer


The microsystems for biology and health, referred as bio-MEMS, experience an unprecedented development, especially in Japan. The technological level and maturity they demonstrate allow their integration in clinical trials protocols. Such microsystems are developed in LIMMS/CNRS-IIS, a joint international unit between CNRS and the Institute of Industrial Science of the University of Tokyo (IIS). The convergence of bioMEMS with a comprehensive research against Cancer open a promising scientific investigation domain, notably as the research against cancer pursued in Lille was endorsed by the National Cancer under the SIRIC ONCOLille program.



SMMiL-E relates to the setting-up and the realization of a comprehensive research program on bioMEMS against Cancer in a sustainable international high-level collaboration.

The project will synergize the bio-MEMS research from LIMMS/CNRS-IIS with the research against Cancer performed in Lille area under the SIRIC ONCOLille program. To reach its objectives, SMMiL-E encompasses the transfer in the Nord Pas-de-Calais region of Bio MEMS type micro technologies stemming from IIS. The bioMEMS technologies will be installed in a platform located in the mere hospital-university area, in order to be in close contact with medical teams with facilitated access to clinical research. The transferred technologies are positioned as a continuation of the advanced technologies of IEMN and would represent for IEMN an extension towards biology and medical applications.

SMMiL-E also aims to be a special observatory point from which it will be possible to measure the societal impact of these biotechnologies, considered as one of the six key enabling technologies in the Horizon 2020 European research framework. The interdisciplinary nature of the project will foster innovation, creation of intellectual property, and generate technology transfers towards related industrial partners. A training component is also part of the project, In the International Master of PRES Lille Nord de France context, joint careers in biophysics and bioengineering for health could be developed with the University of Tokyo, and include teaching-researchers mobility and students exchanges.


The scientific activities encompass bioMEMS research against Cancer – technology development and bio related experiments – as an original interdisciplinary approach to the SIRIC ONCO-Lille program. The projects aims to bridge fundamental and clinical research around 4 work packages related to the scale of transferred biotechnologies:

  1. Bio molecular mechanisms of the tumor resistance to treatment (DNA degradation under therapeutic irradiations, Microtubules stabilization in chemotherapy, …)

  2. Cellular evaluation and diagnosis: Stem cells and circulating tumor cells detection and sorting, study of cell senescence and tumor dormancy

  3. Cells interaction and therapeutic targets: in vitro tumor angiogenesis, cellular mobility and metastatic processes

  4. Biological adhesives and neo-tissues: cellular fibers and post-surgery recovery.

By means of an upstream research, this program targets more effective disease detection, a strengthened efficacy of therapy and post-treatment monitoring, for a better care to patient.

Video introduction