Research facts

  • Wayne State University's research portfolio has grown markedly as reflected in research funding. In FY2021, Research awards increased over 70.2% since FY2015, totaling $320.1 million. Wayne State's research expenditures increased over 13.7% since FY2015 in FY2020, the most recent year that NSF rankings are available, totaling $243.3 million with the university ranked 70th among public research institutions.
  • WSU is a member of the University Research Corridor, an alliance of Michigan's three largest research institutions that includes the University of Michigan and Michigan State University. The Corridor's objective is to play a key role in creating a vibrant Michigan economy that leverages the intellectual capital and work proactively to attract the knowledge economy businesses that can find the research activity that feeds new enterprise, educates the workforce and plants the seeds for the new industries of tomorrow.
  • WSU has the highest levels of accreditation by the American Association for Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care, Accreditation of Human Research Protection Programs Inc., and assurances through the Office for Protection of Research Risks at the National Institutes of Health and through other national and local agencies.
  • In October 2021, The National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities of the National Institutes of Health awarded Wayne State University $18.15 million over five years to establish a Center for Multiple Chronic Diseases Associated with Health Disparities: Prevention, Treatment, and Management that will use community-based interventions deployed from three research institutions to fight hypertension, heart failure and coronary heart disease in the Black population. The Center is a proactive versus reactive approach to reducing overwhelming cardiometabolic health disparities and downstream Black-White lifespan inequality in Detroit and Cleveland, two uniquely comparable cities. 
  • WSU is home to the Perinatalogy Research Branch (PRB) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), one of the only clinical branches in the Division of Intramural Research of the NIH to focus its research on human pregnancy and unborn children. Using a multidisciplinary approach to study pregnancy complications, the Branch has assisted in providing care to over 25,000 pregnant mothers and their unborn children.
  • WSU's Institute of Environmental Health Sciences received a $7.5 million NIH Center grant renewal in 2017 for the Center for Urban Responses to Environmental Stressors. The center is aimed at developing a cleaner, healthier environment in Detroit by studying how exposures to stressors that are prevalent in the urban industrialized environment – both chemical and non-chemical – impact human health in Detroit and beyond.  It is one of approximately 20 select P30 Core Centers funded by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences of the NIH.
  • Wayne State University received an Initiative for Maximizing Student Development (IMSD) T32 training program grant from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences of the National Institutes of Health in 2021. This $2.5 million grant will aid in growing Wayne State's successful IMSD R25 graduate training program in biomedical sciences and behavioral research, which existed for many years and was led by Joseph C. Dunbar, Ph.D., professor of physiology and director of medical student research and innovation in Wayne State's School of Medicine, along with Rasheeda Zafar, Ph.D., IMSD program administrator. The IMSD T32 program will provide 10 graduate students a year with a structured academic community, additional career-development activities and individualized mentoring, allowing the diverse trainees to cultivate highly sought-after skills that will lead to successful careers in the biomedical sciences.
  • The university received a $1.97 NIH grant from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences for a T34 program, Maximizing Access to Research Careers. The program will support approximately 20 undergraduate students each year in a structured academic community that will provide additional career development activities and individualized mentoring to cultivate highly sought-after skills and prepare students to enter into Ph.D. and M.D./Ph.D. programs and careers in the biomedical sciences.
  • The university received a $1.2 million NIH grant from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences for a T32 program, Chemistry Biology Interface Training Program. The biomedical culture has placed greater emphasis on quantitative data analysis, rigor and reproducibility, and transparency to ensure quality and accuracy of research findings and safety to minimize risk to scientists and the environment. To take advantage of this unprecedented opportunity to thoroughly dissect biological systems with high standards of rigor and many career perspectives, a biomedical work force capable of multi-disciplinary, team-driven, and problem-focused thinking is needed. In total, this modern world of biomedical research requires a rethinking of the Ph.D. training experience. To address the changing needs in biomedical work force training, Wayne State is utilizing this T32 training program for a Chemistry Biology Interface (CBI) training program to train the next generation of Ph.D. graduates that will form a strong scientific identity with discipline-specific skills and informed multi-disciplinary perspectives.
  • The Institute of Gerontology at WSU, along with the University of Michigan, successfully renewed the Michigan Center for Urban African Aging Research (MCUAAAR) grant, a collaborative research effort funded by the National Institute on Aging.  It is one of six centers coordinated by the Resource Centers for Minority Aging Research to empirically investigate and reduce health disparities between minority and non-minority older adults.
  •  Other WSU programs related to health care include the School of Medicine, the Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, the College of Nursing, and the C.S. Mott Center for Human Growth and Development, as well as research and clinical care affiliations and a strong partnership with the Henry Ford Hospital System. Wayne State is also home to the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute – one of 41 nationwide NCI-designated comprehensive cancer institutes; the Center for Molecular Medicine and Genetics and the Children's Research Institute of Michigan, which supports a top-20 NIH-funded pediatric program in the only freestanding children's hospital in Michigan.
  • WSU has a number of core research facilities available to scientists within the WSU community. This includes facilities in analytical chemistry, biocomputing, biostatistics, cell culture, clinical genetics, confocal microscopy, engineering technology, flow cytometry, genomics, imaging, metabolomics, proteomics, tissue biorepository, toxicology, and more.
  • The university offers a number of internal funding programs to assist faculty researchers in achieving success in obtaining external funding to conduct research, create scholarship, and perform creatively.
  • WSU offers a mentoring seminar series, the Research Development Seminar Series, to jumpstart faculty, post-doc and student research careers.
  • Sponsored Program Administration provides WSU's faculty, staff and students with the resources to facilitate submission of proposals and administration of sponsored programs, private grants and gifts awarded to faculty.
  • The Office of Research Compliance oversees all areas of research compliance, including research with humans, animals, rDNA, radiation safety and chemical safety. The office prepares researchers to meet federal compliance regulations through the presentation of university-wide and department-based workshops related to research compliance.