The Innovative Medicines Initiatives (IMI 1 & 2) is the world's biggest public-private partnership (PPP) in life sciences, providing a collaborative platform to facilitate and fund research across the EU.
Innovative Medicines Initiative 1 (2008-2013)
In 2007, the European Commission released a proposal for the creation of the Innovative Medicines Initiative Joint Undertaking, a public-private partnership (PPP) between the European Union and the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA). Following discussions in the European Parliament and among the Member States, the legislation creating the IMI was approved in December 2007.
The overall goal of IMI1 was to ‘significantly improving the efficiency and effectiveness of the drug development process with the long-term aim that the pharmaceutical sector produce more effective and safer innovative medicines’. The programme had a budget of EUR 2 billion across 2008-2013, with half of this budget coming from the EU’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) and other half from in-kind contributions from EFPIA and its member companies.
The first Call for proposals was launched on 30 May 2008, whilst the first projects started in 2009. By the end of 2013, 11 Calls for proposals had been issued, with 60 projects funded. A number of projects focused on specific health issues, such as neurological conditions (e.g. Alzheimer’s disease).
Innovative Medicines Initiative 2 (2014-2016)
The success of the IMI1 programme prompted the European Commission and EFPIA to take steps to continue IMI under, Horizon 2020 (2014-14), the European Union's research programme. The legislation creating IMI2 was approved by the European Parliament and Member States in the first half of 2014, and IMI2 was officially launched in July 2014.
IMI2 runs from 2014 to 2020 and it has a total budget of up to EUR 3.276 billion, with half of the budget coming from Horizon 2020, the the majority of the other half coming from EFPIA and its member companies, with a focus of the new Initiative remaining on the needs of patients and society, delivering tools and resources to speed up the development of urgently-needed treatments, particularly in relation to accelerating patient access to new treatments.
Under the IMI2 programme, we have continued to launch regular Calls for proposals and projects. These include projects on diseases that have been part of the IMI portfolio since the beginning (e.g. dementia) as well as new, large scale programmes focused on projects for data etc.
To date, IMI 2 has issued 23 research calls, with 122 projects and programmes funded.
More information on the IMI is available at: https://www.imi.europa.eu/