Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI)

Program Objectives

The Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) is Europe's largest public-private initiative aiming to speed up the development of better and safer medicines for patients. The IMI2 program aims to increase the success rate of clinical trials of new vaccines, improve drug development process and develop new therapies where there is limited market incentive, such as antimicrobial resistance.

What are the health needs and challenges?

New and innovative treatments are needed to tackle Europe’s growing health challenges. Where there is medical, social or public health need, the development of innovative medicines must be fast in order to meet demands. By collaborating with healthcare researchers, universities, pharmaceutical industries, SMEs and medicine regulators these challenges can be tackled and new treatments developed.

Description of partnership activities and how they address needs and challenges

IMI supports collaborative research projects and builds networks of industrial and academic experts in order to boost pharmaceutical innovation in Europe. The Initiative is a joint undertaking between the European Union and the pharmaceutical industry association EFPIA. In 2016, there are over 7000 researchers across different sectors involved who work on open collaboration, improved R&D productivity and innovative approaches.

IMI was launched in 2008 and currently has over 70 projects. Some focus on specific health issues such as neurological conditions, and others focus on broader challenges such as the sustainability of chemical drug production.

In 2011, the European Commission called for unprecedented collaborative research and development efforts to bring new antibiotics to patients. Consequently, a specific IMI program to research new antibiotics was launched. The result was the New Drugs 4 Bad Bugs (ND4BB) program.

One project within the ND4BB programme is COMBACTE-CARE, a study and clinical trial of a novel antibiotic designed to tackle drug-resistant infections. The aim of the trial is to assess the safety and workings of the antibiotic in 40 patients with ‘complicated intra-abdominal infections’. The project focuses on tackling bacteria called CRE, which is resistant to most antibiotics and consequently there are limited or no treatments.

Corresponding principle in the declaration

"We support new ways of working such as open collaborations between industry and public researchers to overcome the scientific challenges of creating new antibiotics and diagnostics".

Read full Declaration by the Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology and Diagnostics Industries on Combating Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR)

Partnership information

Company(ies) AstraZeneca , GlaxoSmithKline , Sanofi

Partner(s) Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, European Commission, Jacobs University, MedImmune, Service Health Madrid, St George's, University of London, Université de Genève, University Medical Centre Groningen, University Utrecht, Uppsala University

Type of Partner(s) Academia / Hospitals, Government, NGOs, Other Business

Therapeutic Focus Infectious Diseases

Disease(s) Drug-Resistant Infections (AMR)

Program Type(s) Research & Development - Development of Treatments, Research & Development - Operations Research

Region(s) Europe & Central Asia

Number of Countries 28

Country(ies) Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom

Start Date 2008

More information IMI Europa

Anticipated completion date Ongoing