Dr. John Mendelsohn, Chairman, Worldwide Innovative Networking (WIN) Consortium in personalized cancer medicine
“Our mission is to rapidly translate personalized cancer medicine discoveries into standards of patient care worldwide.” Dr. John Mendelsohn, Chairman, Worldwide Innovative Networking (WIN) Consortium in personalized cancer medicine

WINning together

WIN was formed on the premise that we can accomplish more together than each organization can achieve working alone. We aim to improve cancer patients’ survival and quality of life. View WIN's history and unique attributes:

WIN represents a global collaboration of cancer centers, life science and biotech organizations, pharmaceutical and technology companies, health plans, and not-for-profit organizations.
The Worldwide Innovative Networking (WIN) Consortium in personalized cancer medicine was initiated in 2010 with leadership from leading cancer centers worldwide. WIN is a non-profit, non-governmental organization headquartered in Paris.

WIN was created to accelerate the pace and reduce the cost of translating novel cancer treatments to the bedside by developing and applying, through worldwide clinical trials and research projects, the most promising advances in genomic-based cancer research. WIN aims to initiate research projects each year in a global consortium guided by an independent scientific advisory board.

WIN now includes nearly 40 institutional members. These stakeholders have come together from all parts of the world to address the challenge of increasing the efficacy of cancer diagnostics and therapeutics by understanding the genetics and biology of each individual’s tumor and accounting for genetic differences across diverse populations—from North and South America, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East.

Our goal is to significantly improve outcomes for patients around the globe. We aim to increase the number of patients worldwide that have access to innovative, global clinical trials in the area of genomic-based cancer therapeutics. Global diversity and inclusion of all stakeholders is WIN’s most important and differentiating asset.
WIN is comprised of organizations representing all stakeholders in personalized cancer medicine.
WIN enables cross-sector collaborations designed to accelerate the speed and efficacy with which breakthroughs in personalized cancer medicine can be realized and brought to patients worldwide.

Our members include leading academic, pharmaceutical, life science, not-for-profit, health IT, and healthpayer organizations.
Our members include 25 leading academic centers representing 16 countries and four continents, enabling coordinated studies with a global patient population.
The response to a genetically-targeted therapy can vary due to differences in ethnicity and environment. WIN's global studies are designed to identify and account for this variability, enhancing the speed and efficacy with which novel discoveries can be made and brought to patients around the world.

WIN's first trial, WINTHER, is currently being carried out through a collaboration between six academic centers in five countries, with key support from Europe (EUFP7), Fondation ARC, Pfizer and other pharma companies.
WIN prioritizes cross-sector interaction designed to enhance learning across and between continents and healthcare sectors.
WIN Symposia, held annually in Paris, bring together hundreds of leaders representing all stakeholders from around the world in a forum designed to promote the exchange of ideas and information.

Clinical trials and projects

WIN members collaboratively design and carry out global studies designed to achieve breakthroughs for patients worldwide. Our distinguished Scientific Advisory Board oversees WIN studies. Current trials include:

WINTHER, the WIN Consortium's first global personalized cancer medicine trial, is an ongoing global study carried out at multiple leading academic cancer centers around the world.
WINTHER aims to validate a breakthrough concept that would offer treatment guided by each patients biology for the vast majority of cancer patients.

With multiple cancer centers representing four countries - as well as partner biotech and pharma companies - WINTHER exemplifies WIN's commitment to innovative, collaborative studies that make effective, personalized medicine a reality for patients worldwide.
WIN is currently planning innovative global clinical trials that represent the next generation of studies focused on lung cancer.
European funded trials WINTHER EU FP7 funded and CHEMORES EU FP6 funded established foundations for WIN future global strategy for lung cancer currently under development.

The concept underlying the new strategy is developed in the following publications:
WIN provides a legal and fundraising framework that enables collective fundraising while protecting its members' intellectual property.
The WIN platform enables multiple organizations from different sectors to productively collaborate while providing for the protection of intellectual property. Each project or clinical trial has its own specific contract or funding mechanism.

People leadership

WIN leaders are selected for their contributions and commitment to making effective, personalized cancer medicine a reality for patients around the world. They guide WIN's strategic, operational, and scientific direction.

John Mendelsohn Photo
John Mendelsohn

Director, Khalifa Institute for Personalized Cancer Medicine and Past-President, the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center (USA)

Richard L. Schilsky Photo
Chairman, WIN Scientific Advisory Board
Richard L. Schilsky

Chief Medical Officer, American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO); Chairman, WIN SAB

Razelle Kurzrock Photo
Chair, Clinical Trials Committee
Razelle Kurzrock

Chief, Division of Hematology & Oncology, Sr. Deputy Center Director for Clinical Science, University of California San Diego Moores Cancer Center (USA)

Vladimir Lazar Photo
Chief Operating Officer
Vladimir Lazar

Chief Operating Officer, WIN Consortium

Our members

WIN members include 39 leading organizations representing all stakeholders in personalized cancer medicine. Our shared vision is delivering the promise of effective, personalized cancer medicine to patients worldwide.

WIN Symposia

WIN Symposia, held annually in Paris, gather leaders representing a breadth of stakeholders from around the world to learn, share, and collaborate. Visit www.winsymposium.org for registration and additional information.

WIN 2016 Symposium logotype

WIN 2016 Symposium

June 27, 2016 - June 28, 2016

WIN 2016 will be the eighth in a series of symposia dedicated to advancing personalized cancer medicine. The Symposium is a unique forum bringing leaders representing all stakeholders - academia, pharma, biotech / life sciences, regulatory, and health payer - from around the globe. For registration and additional information, please visit www.winsymposium.org.

WIN 2015 Symposium logotype

WIN 2015 Symposium

June 29, 2015 - June 30, 2015

The WIN 2015 Symposium, on the theme of “Novel Targets, Innovative Agents, Advanced Technologies: A WINNing Strategy?” featured a global array of many of the world’s leading experts in personalized cancer medicine - from academia, pharma, biotech, and governmental organizations.

WIN 2014 Symposium logotype

WIN 2014 Symposium

June 23, 2014 - June 24, 2014

The WIN 2014 Symposium which was held in Paris, June 23 and 24, 2014, was an exceptional global event entirely dedicated to breakthrough biomarker investigations and combination therapies for cancer. Over 400 delegates from more than 35 countries worldwide attended the Symposium.

What people are saying

Illumina, Inc. (NASDAQ: ILMN), the global leader in DNA sequencing and array-based technologies, today announced it has joined the Worldwide Innovative Networking (WIN) Consortium.
SAN DIEGO and VILLEJUIF, France—September 23, 2015—Illumina, Inc. (NASDAQ: ILMN), the global leader in DNA sequencing and array-based technologies, today announced it has joined the Worldwide Innovative Networking (WIN) Consortium. Founded on the recognition that greater success can be achieved through collaboration than any organization can achieve alone, the WIN Consortium is a global network of leading academic, industry, insurance and non-profit research organizations working to make personalized cancer care a reality for patients worldwide.
“We are very pleased to welcome Illumina to WIN,” said Dr. John Mendelsohn, Chairman of the WIN Consortium and the Director of the Khalifa Institute for Personalized Cancer Therapy at MD Anderson Cancer Center. “Their expertise will be invaluable as we work to accelerate the pace and reduce the cost of translating novel cancer treatments to the bedside by developing and applying, through worldwide clinical trials, the most promising advances in genomic-based cancer research.”
“The WIN Consortium is uniquely bringing together renowned institutions and cancer researchers from around the world. By working together, we will be able to generate the type of clinical utility data needed to define the value of next-generation genomic testing for oncology, as well as newer methods such as liquid biopsy,” said John Leite, Vice President of Illumina’s Oncology business. “We look forward to collaborating, with the ultimate goal of making personalized therapy a reality for cancer patients.”

About Illumina

Illumina is improving human health by unlocking the power of the genome. Our focus on innovation has established us as the global leader in DNA sequencing and array-based technologies, serving customers in the research, clinical and applied markets. Our products are used for applications in the life sciences, oncology, reproductive health, agriculture and other emerging segments. To learn more, visit www.illumina.com and follow @illumina.
About the WIN Consortium

Founded in 2010, WIN is an initiative from the Institut Gustave Roussy (France) and University of Texas MD Anderson cancer center (USA). WIN is unique structurally in that it brings together organizations from academia, business and not-for-profits to focus on translating the latest advances in personalized cancer medicine into the standard of care. WIN is built on the recognition that all stakeholders in personalized cancer therapy must collaborate and share information, in order to effectively bring the latest innovations in personalized cancer care to the patient. WIN is a non-profit organization formed by 40 renowned members: Academic cancer centres (25 centers in 17 countries), companies (Blue Cross Blue Shield, Agilent Technologies, GE Healthcare, Oracle Health Services, Foundation Medicine, Takeda, AstraZeneca and Pfizer), non-profit organizations such as EORTC, CRUK and Fondation ARC. WIN organizes an annual symposium in Paris dedicated to personalized medicine. For further information, please visit www.winconsortium.org and www.winsymposium.org.

Illumina, Inc.
Rebecca Chambers, 858-255-5243
Jennifer Temple, 858-882-6822

WIN Consortium
Vladimir Lazar, 33 66 109 15 22
HTG Enters Worldwide Innovative Networking (WIN) Consortium to Personalized Cancer Medicine
TUCSON, Ariz., Aug. 5, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- HTG Molecular Diagnostics, Inc. (Nasdaq:HTGM), a provider of instruments and reagents for molecular profiling applications announced it has joined the Worldwide Innovative Networking (WIN) Consortium in personalized cancer medicine as an official technology partner.
WIN represents a global collaboration of cancer centers, life science and biotech organizations, pharmaceutical and technology companies, academic institutions, health plans, and patient advocacy groups. These stakeholders have come together from all parts of the world to address the challenge of increasing the efficacy of cancer diagnostics and therapeutics by understanding the genetics and biology of each individual's tumor and accounting for genetic differences across diverse populations.

WIN will use the HTG EdgeSeq system and products for lung cancer research and clinical trial investigations aimed to develop gene expression molecular profiling in vitro diagnostic tests for multiple targeted therapies. HTG EdgeSeq technology will enable WIN members to measure quantitative expression of both message (mRNA) and microRNA (miRNA) from very small, challenging sample types such as formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tissues and plasma from blood. Automated on the HTG EdgeSeq system, HTG EdgeSeq technology couples HTG's proprietary nuclease protection chemistry with Next-Generation Sequencing (NGS).

HTG expects its membership in WIN will provide important resources and information for selection of novel therapies for a series of lung cancer trials to better predict outcomes in lung cancer patients than currently accepted genomic analysis alone.

"We are thrilled to partner with WIN to investigate new assays to better diagnose and treat patients afflicted with lung cancer," stated TJ Johnson, HTG Molecular Chief Executive Officer.

About HTG:

Headquartered in Tucson, Arizona, HTG Molecular Diagnostics' mission is to empower precision medicine at the local level. In 2013, the company commercialized its HTG Edge instrument platform and a portfolio of RNA assays that leverage HTG's proprietary nuclease protection chemistry. HTG Edge system capabilities have been expanded to fully automate sample and targeted library preparation for next-generation sequencing. Additional information is available at www.htgmolecular.com.

Safe Harbor Statement:

Statements contained in this press release regarding matters that are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements associated with the use of our technology by Consortium members, expected benefits from our membership in the Consortium and the capabilities of our technology. Words such as "believes," "anticipates," "plans," "expects," "intends," "will," "goal," "potential" and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements, though not all forward-looking statements necessarily contain these identifying words. These forward-looking statements are based upon management's current expectations, are subject to known and unknown risks, and involve assumptions that may never materialize or may prove to be incorrect. Actual results and the timing of events could differ materially from those anticipated in such forward-looking statements as a result of various risks and uncertainties, including, without limitation, risks inherent in molecular profiling research and development activities. These and other factors are described in greater detail in our quarterly report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended March 31, 2015, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on June 8, 2015. All forward-looking statements contained in this press release speak only as of the date on which they were made, and we undertake no obligation to update such statements to reflect events that occur or circumstances that exist after the date on which they were made.
CONTACT: Westwicke Partners
Jamar Ismail
Phone: 415-513-1282
Email: jamar.ismail@westwicke.com
TJ Johnson
President / CEO
HTG Molecular Diagnostics
Phone: 520-547-2827 x130
Email: tjjohnson@htgmolecular.com
Richard L. Schilsky, Chief Medical Officer of ASCO and Chairman of the WIN Scientific Advisory Board, discusses highlights of the WIN 2015 Symposium, held in Paris on June 29-30.
WIN Consortium Describes Development of SIMS Algorithm to Personalize NSCLC Triplet Therapies
NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Researchers from the Worldwide Innovative Networking (WIN) Consortium recently modeled a way to map the critical molecular aberrations driving a lung cancer patient’s tumor and use it to personalize treatment with a three-drug cocktail.

Led by Razelle Kurzrock of the Moores Cancer Center at the University of California, San Diego, the researchers developed a so-called simplified interventional points mapping system (SIMS) that they used to sift through the complex web of molecular markers implicated in driving a tumor and prioritize the most “disturbed” druggable targets that can be used to personalized patients’ treatment with a three-drug strategy.

Kurzrock and colleagues described the method they used to develop SIMS in the open access peer reviewed journal Oncotarget earlier this month.

Vladimir Lazar, a lead study author from the Gustave-Roussy Cancer Center, highlighted that in developing SIMS his group integrated the latest knowledge about the molecular factors involved in cancer and tried to distill from a dizzyingly complex picture an algorithm that one day physicians could use to customize combination treatments for patients. “What is new here is the results integrate in a very simple manner, by scoring one to 10, thousands of ‘omics measurements,” Lazar, chief operating officer of the WIN Consortium, told GenomeWeb.

In the near term, the consortium hopes that with further validation SIMS can be used to design cancer trials investigating personalized targeted drug combinations that improve survival and outcomes for metastatic non-small cell lung cancer patients. According to the American Cancer Society, around 30 percent of patients diagnosed with stage II NSCLC, and between 5 percent and 14 percent of those with stage III disease, live for five years. Kurzrock and colleagues point out in their paper that after advanced NSCLC patients have failed first line therapy, median survival is around seven months.

Lazar noted that SIMS needs to be validated in a prospective clinical trial. To do that, the consortium has brought together stakeholders from industry and academia to launch the Survival Prolongation by Rationale Innovative Genomics (SPRING) trial. Additionally, the WIN Consortium recently announced that Waun Ki Hong will oversee its research efforts around NSCLC. Hong led the Biomarker-integrated Approaches of Targeted Therapy for Lung Cancer Elimination (BATTLE) trial, the first prospective, adaptively randomized study in NSCLC that employed “real-time” biopsies to profile patients’ tumors.

Using SIMS, the WIN Consortium is particularly eager to test out the triple-therapy approach – a strategy that has been successful in the treatment of AIDS and tuberculosis – in advanced NSCLC. By using SIMS to craft a precision treatment plan, researchers are hoping to identify triplet therapy combinations that NSCLC patients have the best chance of responding to. “Everyone agrees with the principle that the future might be in combinations of targeted therapies, but the main problem is how to select them and match the right patient to the right combination,” Lazar said. “The purpose of this paper is to lay out the scientific rationale as to how to select [treatment] combinations.”


In developing SIMS, researchers first identified so-called interventional points – 24 markers in 183 genes corresponding to biological activities that can be acted on by a drug. In the paper, study authors provided the example of the HER group of receptors and ligands as an interventional point that can be targeted by pan-HER targeted drugs.

Researchers then prioritized the interventional points based on how “disturbed” the genes are in terms of mutations, messenger RNA and microRNA expression levels, and copy number variations in tumor versus normal cells. “The more disturbed the genes of an intervention point, the higher the probability that therapeutics targeted at that point will impact the viability of tumor cells, and hence benefit the patient,” Kurzrock and colleagues reasoned in the paper.

Because mutations are known to drive cancer, they have the most weight in the algorithm. Then, gene expression is compared between tumor and normal samples. “The differential expression takes into account messenger RNA,” Lazar said, pointing out however that the “correlation between messenger RNA and proteins are not perfect.” To adjust for this, the algorithm also factors in the expression of the top five microRNAs that target the messenger RNA at an interventional point, and if there is discordance, the score is penalized. The impact of microRNAs is “dramatic” for some interventional points, but not others, Lazar noted.

Finally, the algorithm also factors in copy number variations and their impact on messenger RNA expression. “It happened in this set of genes, the impact of CNVs was quite low,” Lazar said. “The major players were the mutations, the messenger RNA, and the microRNA.”

Kurzrock and colleagues retrospectively generated these scores for interventional points identified in 121 patients who had their tumors surgically removed at a French institute between 2002 and 2006. While the method identified different high-scoring interventional points among these individuals, the patients shared several key commonly activated nodes. Kurzrock’s group further observed that, based on the scores, some patients could perhaps benefit from two or more triplet drug combos.

Interventional points that were commonly activated in 121 patients included CDK4/6, Ras/Raf, anti-apoptosis, Her, Notch and Polokinase-Aurora-Kinase. Immune-related interventional points, such as PD-L1 and CTLA4, showed up for more than half of the patients.

Kurzrock and colleagues homed in on six drug combinations involving anti-PD-L1 immunotherapy that the SIMS scores suggested might benefit at least half the NSCLC patients. For example, 28 percent of NSCLC patients had activation of RAS/RAF, mTOR/PI3K, and PDL1. For 19 percent of patients, the score prioritized PD-L1, mTOR/PI3K, and DNA repair mechanisms.

The commonly perturbed interventional nodes had targeted drugs (either approved or in clinical studies) associated with them. However, researchers noted that in the study there weren’t that many patients with EGFR mutations or ALK rearrangements, and so drug combinations targeting these markers occurred infrequently.

Triplet strategy

In advanced lung cancer, the standard of care is to combine chemotherapy with a targeted agent. Among patients who have EGFR or ALK mutations, personalized therapy options have improved response rates and extended progression-free survival. But “the problem with [these] monotherapies is secondary resistance,” Lazar noted.

This is why the WIN Consortium wants to test out the efficacy of triplet therapeutic strategies when they are given to patients based on the most perturbed molecular characteristics of their tumor. “Having a clear insight to what is wrong in the biology for the tumor as compared to the normal status, this is very useful information at different levels – at the level of better understanding the use of monotherapies but especially to provide the landscape for providing combined therapies,” Lazar said.

Triplet therapies have successfully improved long-term outcomes for patients with HIV or bacterial infections. Lazar noted that in AIDS, only the combination of three agents was able to control the viral load and reduce it to the status of a chronic disease. From this experience, Kurzrock’s group has a hypothesis that combining three drugs with different modes of action (targeting different interventional nodes) might just stave off resistance and prolong patient survival in NSCLC patients, too.

The complexity of cancer necessitates a multitude of three-drug combinations, in Lazar’s view. “You’ll never have one combination that’s good for all patients,” he said. “You’ll have to have multiple combinations that are preselected on a rational basis.”

But one of the challenges of giving cancer patients three drugs has been the risk that they’ll experience toxicities they can’t tolerate. Importantly, the SIMS algorithm pinpointed immune-related interventional points in more than half of the NSCLC patients, which would make immunotherapy part of their triplet combination. This is key, given the potential of immunomodulators to mitigate toxicities.

Also worth noting is that in this study, researchers collected molecular measurements on tumor versus normal samples. This is important because it means that the algorithm could be used in all solid tumors, but in order to do so, “you need to generate this knowledge,” Lazar said. He noted that worldwide most cancer research is only focused on analyzing the tumor.

A research team led by Victor Velculescu of the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center recently published data showing that sequencing only the tumor, and not also the matched normal tissue, resulted in the identification of false-positive alterations, which would be thought of as actionable in terms of directing therapy based on tumor-only analysis.

“This paper makes me very happy,” Lazar said. “It’s indirect confirmation that … analyzing tumor versus normal [samples] will be more and more important.” The WIN Consortium is further studying this approach in the WINTHER trial, involving MD Anderson Cancer Center in the US, Institut Gustave Roussy in France, Vall d’Hebron Institute of Oncology in Spain, and the Chaim Sheba Medical Center in Israel.

Meanwhile, it will be some time before SIMS is integrated into the clinic. Forthcoming validation studies such as the SPRING trial will ultimately determine whether the algorithm becomes part of oncologists’ tool box. The WIN Consortium said it will discuss the latest study and provide further details on its overarching lung cancer clinical trials plan at the WIN 2015 Symposium in Paris in June.