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What are Health Protection Research Units?

20 April, 2015

The National Institute for Health Research Health Protection Research Unit (NIHR HPRU) at London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine is a partnership with Public Health England (PHE) in Environmental Change and Health in collaboration with Exeter University and University College London.

Priority areas

PHE was established in April 2013 and incorporates the responsibilities of the Health Protection Agency. The role of the HPRUs is to support PHE in delivering its objectives and functions for the protection of the public’s health in the following areas:

Topic-based priority areas:

  • Blood-borne and sexually transmitted infections
  • Chemical and radiation threats and hazards
  • Emergency preparedness and response 
  • Emerging infections (including zoonoses) and biological threats
  • Environmental change and health
  • Gastrointestinal infections
  • Healthcare associated infections and antimicrobial resistance
  • Health impact of environmental hazards
  • Immunisation (this HPRU)
  • Respiratory infections.

 Cross-cutting priority areas:

  • Evaluation of interventions
  • Modelling methodology.


Research funding is provided for a five-year period starting 1 April 2014 following an open competition. This funding complements existing NIHR funding streams.