WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Eli Lilly & Co. plans to provide up to $52 million to Purdue University as part of a collaboration in life science research.

The Indianapolis-based drugmaker and the school announced the 5-year agreement on Thursday, calling it Purdue’s largest strategic collaboration with a single company.

Initial research areas include improving the delivery of injectable medicines to help reduce pain, decrease the number of injections and improve health. Researchers also will develop ways to reduce risks associated with investing in drug development.

Purdue President Mitch Daniels says in a statement it’s a “new level of collaboration that will move us forward in areas core to both institutions.”

Purdue researchers from the natural and physical sciences, engineering and veterinary medicine will contribute to the partnership, which could be expanded to other areas.