The UC Davis School of Medicine rose to 37th place among 134 medical schools in the U.S. in an annual ranking of research funding from the National Institutes of Health in 2010, school officials reported Monday.
That's 11 places higher than 2009 and 25 spots better than in 2001, when UC Davis ranked 62nd nationwide.
UC Davis got almost $119 million in total research funding from NIH in 2010. This compares to just over $46 million in 2001. NIH funding represents 62 percent of the school's total outside funding, which reached $190.4 million in fiscal 2009-2010.
"The proportion of NIH funding for an institution is one measure of research excellence," Lars Berglund, associate dean for research at the UC Davis School of Medicine, said in a news release. "Funded by U.S. tax dollars, NIH supports researchers around the country and around the world as they work to improve people's health."
Grants are awarded on a competitive basis.
UC Davis ranked particularly high in basis sciences, including microbiology (12th out of 96 surveyed) and in anatomy/cellular biology (20th out of 80 surveyed). In clinical sciences, the urology department ranked fifth out of 34 schools surveyed and department of neurology ranked 21st out of 78.
Berglund attributed much of the recent gains in NIH research funding to work on autism and fragile X syndrome at the UC Davis MIND Institute, research partnerships with the UC Davis College of Biological Sciences, UC Davis Cancer Center grants and support for scientists through the UC Davis Clinical and Translational Science Center, which seeks to move discoveries from the laboratory into the market place.
"Research fuels the discoveries that transform health, and the infusion of federal funds contributes to the overall economic health of the region," Claire Pomeroy, chief executive officer of the UC Davis Health System and dean of the medical school, said in a news release.
UC Davis ranked fourth among the University of California medical schools in NIH funding last year.
The ranking includes UC Riverside, which was approved by UC Regents in July 2008. The school is gearing up for business but will not accept its first class until fall 2012.
UC San Francisco ranked second in NIH funding among medical schools nationwide, with $442 million in 2010. Johns Hopkins University took the top spot with almost $439 million.
UC San Diego was ninth, with almost $303 million; UC Los Angeles was 12th, with $294 million, and UC Irvine was 54th, with $71 million. Fledgling UC Riverside got $1.3 million.