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UNC 15th in NIH Research Grants; All Health Affairs Units in Top 20

National Institutes of Health funding for research conducted at UNC jumped almost 7 percent last year, according to new figures released by the federal agency.

UNC faculty attracted $289.7 million in NIH funding in fiscal 2004 – up from $271 million a year earlier – ranking 15th overall among U.S. private and public universities. Johns Hopkins University topped the list at $599.2 million. UNC is the top public university in the South and one of only six Southern universities, public or private, cited in the NIH’s top 20.

The NIH, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is the principal biomedical research arm of the federal government. NIH research institutes work on diseases such as AIDS, alcoholism, arthritis, cancer, diabetes and stroke and tackle health topics related to aging, women and children, drug abuse, the environment and emerging multidisciplinary fields such as genomics and proteomics.

“Across the board, our faculty in the health sciences continue to demonstrate that they are among the best in the nation,” said Tony Waldrop ’74, UNC’s vice chancellor for research and economic development. “Numbers like these are possible because a great many Carolina researchers are working very hard to improve people’s health.”

The School of Medicine received the vast majority of UNC’s NIH funds ($212.9 million) for fiscal 2004, ranking 17th nationally – close to a $14 million increase in funding from fiscal 2003 to 2004.

“We are delighted by this evidence of the success of the faculty of the UNC School of Medicine,” said Dr. William L. Roper, dean of the School of Medicine, vice chancellor for medical affairs and chief executive officer of the UNC Health Care System. “This is major progress toward our vision to be the nation’s leading public medical school.”

All five of UNC’s health affairs schools – dentistry, medicine, nursing, pharmacy and public health – ranked within the top 20 of public and private institutions, according to the NIH.

Following are the NIH totals for all five UNC health affairs schools and their national ranks:

  • Medicine received $212.9 million, ranking 17th.
  • Public health received $35.9 million, ranking sixth.
  • Nursing received $8.1 million, ranking fourth.
  • Dentistry received $7.4 million, ranking eighth.
  • Pharmacy received $5 million, ranking 17th.

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