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ABPI backs Innovative Medicines Initiative

The ABPI is backing an initiative designed to place Europe at the forefront of medicines research and development

The Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) has backed an initiative designed to place Europe at the forefront of medicines research and development.

The Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) is a public-private partnership between the European pharmaceutical industry and the European Union, both of which will fund collaboration in certain stages of medicines development and remove bottlenecks in the R&D process.

Half the EUR 2bn (USD 2.9bn) funding will come from the EU and half will come from the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA).

The IMI partnership will focus primarily on enhancing the safety and efficacy of new medicines. While EFPIA member companies are supporting the initiative, which will benefit research by small and medium sized enterprises, academia, patient organisations and other non-profit public entities, they and large pharmaceutical companies will not benefit from public funding.

The aim of the project is to make Europe the most competitive and the most dynamic knowledge-based economy in the world by 2010.
Dr Philip Wright, director of science and technology at the ABPI, said: "It's going to provide a unique opportunity for industry, universities, regulators and healthcare practitioners to work together in partnership. I am very optimistic that the initiative will bring medicines to patients more quickly and effectively and also enable Europe to catch up much of the ground that it has lost.î

"The UK-based pharmaceutical industry conducts 10 per cent of the world's research into innovative medicines, and it is vitally important that this world-leading position is not squandered. This initiative can only help us in our endeavours to remain a major centre for global R&D," concluded Dr Wright.

2nd January 2008


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