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European infrastructures

Published on 31 January 2015
Research infrastructures are facilities, resources and services used by researchers to conduct their work and foster innovation in their scientific fields. They have become essential elements for many communities of researchers, and they are part of a European policy of prioritization and sharing.

The roadmap developed in 2006 and updated in 2008 and 2010 by the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI) plans the European strategy for constructing important infrastructures within the European Research Area (ERA). The Life Sciences Division has been heavily involved in this European policy, and it represented France during the 2004 “BioMedical Sciences” study group. 
Under the FP7, the infrastructure projects identified in the ESFRI roadmap received a subsidy from the European Commission aimed at supporting the preparatory phases of their construction.
At the same time, the FP7 has supported the integration and opening of existing national infrastructures, in order to provide them with an international dimension (Integrated infrastructures initiatives – I3). These newly created European consortia bring together infrastructures and platforms located in several European Union member states, in order to jointly develop a technological R&D program and offer transnational access to the user community.
This development and support policy for European infrastructures continues under the Horizon 2020 program.

Teams from the DSV participate in four of the major European infrastructures established under FP7.

Infrastructures falling within the ESFRI roadmap:

INSTRUCT : Integrating Structural Biology Infrastructure

A pan-European organization of specialized centers in integrated structural biology, INSTRUCT aims to pool its different areas of expertise (protein production, NMR, crystallography, microscopy, etc.) to provide advanced technologies of the highest level of international standards to the scientific community, and to promote the mobility of researchers within the field. Two French centers, one in Strasbourg and the other in Grenoble, are involved in the infrastructure. The DSV is strongly involved in this structuring via the Grenoble center, which notably groups together the Institut de Biologie Structurale (IBS) CEA-UJF-CNRS, the ESRF, and the on-site EMBL branch.

EATRIS : European Advanced Translational Research InfraStructure in medicine

Open to researchers, clinicians and businesses for the development of biomedical innovations, the European infrastructure EATRIS aims to transform basic research findings into diagnostic tools and innovative treatments for patients. NeurATRIS, the national infrastructure in biology and health which focuses on biotherapies in the neurosciences, represents both France and the neurosciences within EATRIS. The DSV coordinates NeurATRIS and represents France in the different scientific and governmental bodies of EATRIS.

Infrastructures within the I3:


The objective of PRIME-XS is to make advanced proteomics technologies available to the scientific community through distributed European infrastructures. The DSV is strongly involved in this consortium via the EDyP platform at Grenoble’s Institut de Recherche en Technologies et Sciences pour le Vivant (CEA-IRTSV).

ESGI (European sequencing and genotyping infrastructure)

The goal of ESGI is to assemble advanced infrastructures in genomics and bioinformatics, in order to facilitate access to the scientific community at large.
The DSV’s Institut de Génomique (CEA-IG), which groups together the Centre National de Génotypage (CNG) and the Genoscope, is a partner in this consortium.