What is iCAN?

iCAN is a national R&D flagship providing solutions to the cancer challenge through a discovery and innovation cluster at the interface of precision cancer medicine and digital health.

We do this in the iCAN Cluster through a unique digital precision cancer medicine platform, enabling the integration of cutting-edge molecular profiling information from tumors with rich longitudinal health data available in Finland. The iCAN Cluster drives novel research discoveries, innovations, spinouts and benefits for patients in collaboration with public and private partners.

The globally unique iCAN Flagship Project forms the core of the cluster and reached national coverage in 2023.

Engagement Opportunities


The iCAN Cluster comprises a dynamic community of more than 400 researchers, healthcare professionals, and passionate patient advocates. Since its establishment in 2019, the cluster has been at the forefront of driving innovation and fostering growth opportunities for companies. The project has secured over 36 million euros in external investment, attracting a diverse range of public and private partners from prominent players in the pharmaceutical industry to digital health and AI pioneers.

As the cluster continues to thrive, we continue to actively seek new partnerships in oncology and digital health and provide a number of engagement opportunities. including the globally unique iCAN Flagship Project consortium providing added value for partners as described in the insert. Other opportunities include case-specific projects varying from company sponsored projects e.g. translational arms to trials to collaborating in data services/technologies e.g. using the iCAN Discovery Platform as a co-developing environment. iCAN Cluster also offers memberships for companies interested in taking part in ecosystem development.

How to join iCAN?

Private partners joining the iCAN Flagship Project consortium gain exclusive access to shape and participate in this collaborative endeavor, creating a unique opportunity to make a lasting impact. Companies joining the iCAN Flagship Project consortium are provided added value in multiple ways:

  1. Unprecedented access to a vast repository of patient samples, longitudinal health data, deep molecular profiling data, and complex disease models for faster discoveries.
  2. Access to iCAN Discovery Platform with a broad set of analysis tools for the fully granular individual-level molecular and health data in a GDPR-compliant safe data environment for accurate, timely, and relevant insights.
  3. Transparent agreements on data access and ownership
  4. Access to unique combination of patient longitudinal health data including full real-world clinical data (raw and OMOP-structured) and for health events (prescriptions, visits to health care provider, etc) from Finnish National Registries providing unique data sets for research at scale.
  5. Unique expertise in oncology and digital health with over 400 researchers, offering valuable support and guidance for innovation in these fields.

For more information, please contact us at ican-partners@helsinki.fi

Patient Advocates

We at iCAN have unique patient involvement with patient representatives at all levels from the highest decision-making body (Steering Board) to consulting the ongoing subprojects where appropriate. We are committed to providing benefits for patients by

  • Collaborating with patients and patient representatives at all levels, systematically and proactively, from research design to dissemination of results. The work is guided by our Patient and Citizen Advisary Board, POTKU. This ensures that our research is of the highest quality and relevant to the needs of cancer patients. If you are interested please contact us!
  • Accelerating scientific discovery, diagnostics, and treatment within the iCAN Cluster. By working closely with the cancer patient community, we aim to maximize the impact of our projects on the lives of those affected by cancer.
  • Facilitating collection of biobank consents and samples critical for cutting-edge molecular profiling. Prospective patients recruited to iCAN are provided information on iCAN as detailed at ican.fi/info.

Our goal is to provide significant and tangible benefits for cancer patients.

Outputs & Publications

During the first four-year term (2019-2022) iCAN has provided an impressive set of outputs – scientific, economical, and societal impact – as indicated in Key Figures and continues actively to engage in all areas. Major events include the Cancer Challenge in 2020 reaching over 70 000 Finns and featured at EU R&D Days and the 2022 iCAN Symposium Mission Possible featuring cutting-edge research and patient involvement in this area. Many of these outputs are highlighted in News & Events; a full list of publications for 2019-2022 can be downloaded here.