The Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) is Europe’s biggest public-private partnership, jointly undertaken by the European Union and the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA). The goal of the IMI public-private partnership is to facilitate collaboration between key players in healthcare research including, but not limited to, patient organizations, universities and pharmaceuticals, and thereby spur development of new medicines, especially within areas that has unmet needs at the moment. Over the next ten years, IMI phase two (IMI2) has a budget on €3.3 billion: €1.638 billion comes from EU’s Horizon 2020, €1.425 billion comes from EFPIA companies via in kind contributions and €213 million are planned to come from other life science industries and organizations.
IMI2 has three specific aims:

  • a 30% better success rate in clinical trials of priority medicines identified by the WHO;
  • clinical proof of concept in immunological, respiratory, neurological and neurodegenerative diseases in just five years;
  • new and approved diagnostic markers for four of these diseases and at least twonew medicines which could either be new antibiotics or new therapies forAlzheimer’s disease.

The first phase of IMI (IMI1) was launched in 2008 and had a budget on €2 billion, which was sponsored by the EU’s Seventh Framework Program for Research (FP7) and in kind contributions from EFPIA. Currently, the first phase is running 46 projects and more are still in the pipeline. Projects that run under IMI1 either have a disease specific focus (among others Alzheimer’s, Schizophrenia and depression) or a more general focus (e.g. the use of stem cells for drug discovery and knowledge management).

Throughout January, IMI is running webinars on each of the topics of the upcoming IMI2 third and fourth Call for proposals and the new rules and procedures. All webinars will have time for Q&As. Read more about IMI2 and the program and registration on IMI’s homepage.