Our commitment to the fight against cancer


 50% of our pharmaceutical Research and Development budget is devoted to anti-cancer research.

It is very important for us to be involved in an oncology excellence cluster (the group’s No. 1 priority in the medicine field) which brings together all the players in the fight against cancer at a single site.

We have supported the Oncopole project from its inception, and we established the vital elements of our Research department there in 2010 (around 500 people). The Centre de Recherche en Oncologie Expérimentale (CROE) [Experimental Oncology Research Centre], situated in Toulouse, works on targeted therapies in cancerology and on chemoresistance (solid tumours and oncohematology). The CROE is installed on the Oncopole campus, which accommodates public and private research bodies, hospital practitioners and patients.

The Oncopole is certified as a National Centre of Excellence for cancer research. The Centre d’Immunologie Pierre Fabre (CIPF) [Pierre Fabre Immunology Centre], in Saint-Julien-en-Genevois, specialises in research on monoclonal antibodies. Since 2012 it has been equipped with a Unité de Bio-production des Anticorps (UBA) [Antibody Bioproduction Unit].



Our anti-cancer drugs are used by oncologists and urologists throughout the world. Pierre Fabre is recognized in particular for developing cytotoxic products with an active substance derived from tropical periwinkles, and for its innovative research into monoclonal antibodies.


oncologie.jpgA priority

Onco-hematology is a priority for Pierre Fabre, with R&D programs focusing in particular on targeted therapies. Our cancer research teams are based at our sites in Saint-Julien-en-Genevois (Pierre Fabre Immunology Center) and Toulouse (Pierre Fabre Research and Development Center). Our work covers fields with high medical expectations: solid tumors (breast, lung, colon, ovarian, bladder and ENT cancers), liquid tumors (leukemia, myeloma, bone marrow transplant) and onco-dermatology.



30 years of partnership with the National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS)

pervenche-tropicale.jpgOncology is part of the history of Pierre Fabre Laboratories. Pierre Fabre researchers have in particular worked with Prof. Potier from the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) in the development of Navelbine® after he registered the patent in 1978. This cooperation resulted in the commercialization of the drug as from 1989 in Western Europe and the US.

In 1987, Pierre Fabre teams approached Prof. Jacquesy’s CNRS research team and founded an entirely original chemical approach: applying the basic work of Nobel prize winner Georges Olah (1934) in superacidic media, which are a million times more acidic than pure sulfuric acid, to medicinal chemistry. The result of this cooperation was JAVLOR®, which has become the first vinca-alkaloid derivative ever obtained using chemistry in a superacidic medium.

Several key advances are also down to Pierre Fabre:

  • The discovery and marketing of chemotherapy products containing active substances derived from plant extracts;
  • The development of oral chemotherapy, which improves treatment comfort for both patients and healthcare staff;
  • The treatment of diseases for which solutions practically did not exist, such as adjuvant therapy for non-small cell lung cancer, second-line treatment for bladder cancer or intravenous dosage forms for use prior to bone marrow transplant (especially in children).


90% of sales are achieved outside France

The Pierre Fabre onco-hematology department handles the marketing of its drugs portofolio throughout the world. We enjoy a presence in all European countries, the USA, Japan, and the main emerging countries, including Brazil, China, Russia, India, South Africa, and North Africa. 90% of sales are achieved outside France. About 400 employees work in more than 25 subsidiaries throughout the world. The relationship of trust formed over the years with the medical world and based on our scientific, clinical, therapeutic and manufacturing knowledge makes us one of Europe’s leaders in the fight against cancer.


Our two manufacturing sites are certified by US, European and Japanese health authorities (FDA, EMA, PMDA). They handle all steps of the manufacturing of NAVELBINE® (vinorelbine) and JAVLOR® (vinflunine). One site is located at Gaillac (Tarn) for raw materials, and the other one at Pau (Pyrénées-Atlantiques) for pharmaceutical formulation and packaging.


We are developing a network of cooperation with:

  • biotechnology companies and academic institutions, including the European Research Center for skin diseases in Toulouse, which directs innovative skin research programs in cell biology and biometrology, and the mixed service and research unit of the Pierre Fabre Research Institute/French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) in the field of epigenetic regulation,
  • international pharmaceutical companies such as Cypress Bioscience, Forest Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Merck & Co or Abbott, for the advanced development of products from our research and their marketing throughout the world,
  • medical staff, including a French association of healthcare staff that has set up the Persolien call center in order to organize the follow-up of patients receiving oral chemotherapy.