(KCPW News) The University of Utah has won nine medical research grants from the National Institutes of Health totaling nearly $8 million, as part of a program funded by the federal stimulus package. Vice President for Research Thomas Parks says that amount puts the U. in the top 10 percent of the 241 universities that received the grants.
“This was one of the most competitive programs that we’ve seen in the federal granting business in quite a while,” he told KCPW. “21,000 scientists across the country applied for them, including 122 applications from the University of Utah.”
Nearly 850 grants were awarded nationwide.
Parks says research funding at the University went up 16 percent last fiscal year, and is up 25 percent in the first quarter of this year. He credits the faculty for bringing in the money.
“This is a very desirable place for research faculty to be now. Each wave of recruiting that we do here, I think we get better people. We’re just able to attract really good faculty,” he said.
The nine projects being funded by the federal grants include diagramming genetic connections in the brain, developing a skin seal to prevent infections from prosthetic limbs, and studying fruit flies to understand metabolic disorders.