Research projects

Our research aims to develop diagnostic and therapeutic tools for cancer fighting by studying the vectorization of radionuclides to cancer cells and their biological effects.

Our research program is structured around three main areas:

Axis 1: Targeted radiotherapy

The main objective of this strategy is to eradicate cancer cells using various radiolabelled vectors such as antibodies and their fragments, peptides, Affitins and liposomes. For instance, the efficacy of radioimmunotherapy (RIT) has been demonstrated in the treatment of certain lymphomas for which it is integrated into the therapeutic arsenal. Nantes’ nuclear medicine department is at the forefront of this development in France and is pursuing its lymphoma research activity by targeting new antigens or applying two-steps RIT to the treatment of small cell lung cancer.

The Nuclear Oncology team is one of the few French teams to develop the use of alpha emitters in this targeting approach.

Axis 2: Molecular imaging

The second objective is to develop molecular imaging, particularly positron emission tomography (PET) of cancers. This last way provides crucial information for improving the therapeutic management of cancer: disease staging, proliferative capacity, prognosis, objectification of the effect of a treatment, therapeutic follow-up, etc. The latter is crucial for improving the therapeutic management of cancer.

Targeted radiotherapy and molecular imaging use similar techniques; radionuclides (adapted to each goal), vectors, radiolabelling, medical physics. They also agree that targeted radiotherapy needs molecular imaging: expression of the target antigen, effectiveness of targeting, quantitative imaging for dosimetry.

Axis 3: Radiobiology

Our team develops the use of alpha particle emitters in therapy. We also combine this molecular radiotherapy with other approaches. Indeed, it is now clearly established that the action of ionizing radiation is not limited to direct cytotoxicity on tumour cells but that these radiation are able, in particular, to elicit an immune response. With this in mind, we are working on studying the biological effects of alpha ionizing radiation on tumour tissues.

Our project aims to combine these approaches to propose innovations and drive them, over the years, from the laboratory to the clinic.

This transfer involves translational research using animal models carrying induced (mouse) or spontaneous (dog) tumours to answer questions arising in the clinical practice of vectorized radiotherapy and molecular imaging.

Our multidisciplinary team develops a broad expertise in chemistry, radiochemistry, radiobiology, immunology, medical physics, protein engineering and preclinical imaging (Applied Multimodal Imaging Centre – CIMA) to support nuclear medicine.

Team 13


  • Michel Chérel
  • Centre de Recherche en Cancérologie et Immunologie Nantes-Angers
  • Institut de Recherche en Santé de l'Université de Nantes - 8 quai Moncousu - BP 70721 - 44007 Nantes cedex 1
  • +33 2 28 08 02 45


  • News

    Welcome to all our newcomers:

    December 2019 :

    • Clémence MAINGUENEAU, Post-Doc (2 years)  in chemistry –  Roasta ANR Project
    • Cassandra METIVIER, PhD in preclinical imaging and therapy – TheraSCoop Project
    • Anne-Lise MAUBERT, Biological engineer (1 year)

    November 2019 :

    • Ludovic LE SAUX, Assistant engineer in chemistry (1 year)

    October 2019 :

    • Chaymaa BEITAR, M2 BMTI – Master Drug Sciences
    • Florian GEFFROY, M2 BBRT – Master Biology-Health
    • Benjamin LE CROM, Post-Doc (2 years) in medical physics
    • Vincent NGUYEN, Assistant engineer in biology ( 13 months)

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Main publications:

  • Bastien Jamet, Clément Bailly, Thomas Carlier, Cyrille Touzeau, Cristina Nanni, Elena Zamagni, Louisa Barré, Anne-Victoire Michaud, Michel Chérel, Philippe Moreau, Caroline Bodet-Milin, Françoise Kraeber-Bodéré. Interest of PET Imaging in Multiple Myeloma. Frontiers in Medicine. (2019). inserm-02088227
  • Navarro AS, Le Bihan T, Le Saëc P, Bris NL, Bailly C, Saï-Maurel C, Bourgeois M, Chérel M, Tripier R, Faivre-Chauvet A. TE1PA as Innovating Chelator for 64Cu Immuno-TEP Imaging: A Comparative in Vivo Study with DOTA/NOTA by Conjugation on 9E7.4 mAb in a Syngeneic Multiple Myeloma Model. Bioconjug Chem. (2019).inserm-02266369
  • Bailly C, Gouard S, Guérard F, Chalopin B, Carlier T, Faivre-Chauvet A, Remaud-Le Saëc P, Bourgeois M, Chouin N, Rbah-Vidal L, Tripier R, Haddad F, Kraeber-Bodéré F, Bodet-Milin C, Chérel M. What is the Best Radionuclide for Immuno-PET of Multiple Myeloma? A Comparison Study Between 89Zr- and 64Cu-Labeled Anti-CD138 in a Preclinical Syngeneic Model. Int J Mol Sci. (2019).inserm-02141555
  • Navarro L, Berdal M, Chérel M, Pecorari F, Gestin JF, Guérard F. Prosthetic groups for radioiodination and astatination of peptides and proteins: A comparative study of five potential bioorthogonal labeling strategies. Bioorg Med Chem. (2019).inserm-01939636
  • Foubert F, Gouard S, Saï-Maurel C, Chérel M, Faivre-Chauvet A, Goldenberg DM, Barbet J, Bailly C, Bodet-Milin C, Carlier T, Kraeber-Bodéré F, Touchefeu Y, Frampas E. Sensitivity of pretargeted immunoPET using 68Ga-peptide to detect colonic carcinoma liver metastases in a murine xenograft model: Comparison with 18FDG PET-CT. Oncotarget. (2018).inserm-01981491v1
  • Grémy O, Miccoli L, Lelan F, Bohand S, Cherel M, Mougin-Degraef M. Delivery of DTPA through Liposomes as a Good Strategy for Enhancing Plutonium Decorporation Regardless of Treatment Regimen. Radiat Res. (2018).inserm-01804916
  • Guérard F, Navarro L, Lee YS, Roumesy A, Alliot C, Chérel M, Brechbiel MW, Gestin JF. Bifunctional aryliodonium salts for highly efficient radioiodination and astatination of antibodies. Bioorg Med Chem. (2017).inserm-01592684

Our team is a member or leader of:


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