National Institute of Health Research

Efficacy and Mechanism Evaluation (EME) Programme

The EME Programme funds clinical efficacy studies.  The studies we support usually test if an intervention works as expected in a well-defined population or group of patients.  The Programme also provides an opportunity to use clinical studies to understand disease or treatment mechanisms, which may in turn lead to improvements in health and patient care.  

We fund clinical studies to test interventions where proof of concept has already been demonstrated, allowing their progress through early clinical trials and on to larger, later clinical trials. Treatment with drugs or biological compounds, psychological interventions, public health initiatives, diagnostic tests and medical devices are all within the remit of the Programme. Treatments or interventions intended to prevent disease are also included.

We support science driven studies with an expectation of substantial health gain, and aim to support excellent clinical science.  The clinical research that we fund is underpinned by robust scientific evidence and is focussed on potential to benefit patients in the medium to longer term.

The EME Programme works closely with the Medical Research Council’s (MRC) translational funding programmesLink open in a new window, the NIHR Health Technology Assessment (HTA) Programme and the NIHR Invention for Innovation (i4i) Programme. The EME Programme plays a key role in translational research, pulling through research into clinical efficacy trials.

The EME Programme is funded by the MRC and the NIHR, with contributions from the CSO in Scotland and NISCHR in Wales and the HSC R&D, Public Health Agency in Northern Ireland. It is managed by the NIHR Evaluation, Trials and Studies Coordinating Centre (NETSCC) based at the University of Southampton.


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