Institute of Medical Research and Training

About Institute of Medical Research and Training


The College of Health Sciences of the University of Ilorin was incepted as a medical school in 1977 and over the years has been fulfilling its mandate of training medical doctors and other allied health professionals for the country. Faculty members are involved in preparing candidates for the Membership and Fellowship Examinations of the Nigerian and West African Postgraduate Medical Colleges, in various disciplines.  The College in addition runs postgraduate programmes in Anatomy, Physiology, Medical Microbiology and Parasitology, Pharmacology and Therapeutics, Paediatrics and Child health, Public Health and Community Health.

Faculty members of the College undertake basic and applied research and publish regularly in peer-reviewed journals. The conduct of research has however been fragmented and much of it has depended on either promotion driven self-sponsorship or collaborations with external counterparts. Whereas the College had played key pioneering roles in the eradication of dracunculiasis and control of onchocerciasis   (amongst others) in Nigeria, the College could do a lot more, through concerted efforts, in research if it could harness and harmonize the various efforts in a multidisciplinary and trans-disciplinary manner. The COBES programme and the affiliation of the College as a WHO Collaborating Center for Research and Manpower development and the internalisation of the University, provide exceptional opportunity for and basis for the establishment of an Institute of Medical Research.

It is in light of this that the College is proposing to establish an Institute Medical Research and training with a view to reinvigorating its research drive. 


Over the years, Medical Faculties in the Country have conducted several clinical and basic sciences research in an effort to find solutions to health challenges affecting Nigerians. They have therefore actively contributed to knowledge in the ever increasing field of Medical Science. However, as it is with many other developmental issues in Nigeria, there has been an increasing gap between research outputs from Nigeria and the developed nations of the world. For instance a search of the PubMed online database using the country names as keyword for publications within the last 5-years as at January 2021 revealed the following number of publications; Ghana-8,331, Kenya-11,747, Nigeria-18,533, Egypt-43,443, and South Africa-51,311. In the same search the United Kingdom returned a figure of 239,222 and America, 325,723 publications. Furthermore, when medical journals published in Nigeria were subjected to the “rule of evidence” which is designed to grade clinical and research findings according to strength, about 45% of the publications assessed from local journals were classified as non-evidence over a two year period 2005-2006[1]. There was no publication classified as having level I evidence among the Nigerian journals assessed, while only 11% of the published articles were rated to have level II to III evidence. Some of the key factors responsible for the low quality of evidence in many Nigerian medical literature and medical publications in the country include poor research facilities, inadequate funding and low capacity for the conduct of studies using some contemporary tools.


With advances in knowledge, the landscape of medical science is also changing. Having studied the epidemiological characteristics of many disease conditions, medical science is today focused on evolving better understanding of the origin and determinants of diseases. This approach allows for the development of solutions that may contribute to finding a more effective cure of ailments, as well as providing efficient strategies for the control of diseases. These are the trends in medical research in which researchers in Nigeria must be actively involved.

To break into the sphere of contemporary biomedical research and contribute meaningfully to global discourse on the origin and determinants of diseases or conditions affecting human health, there is a dire need to expand the resource and capacity base of Faculties in the College of Health Sciences and related disciplines within the University of Ilorin. One way by which this could be achieved is to have a central research facility equipped for conducting high quality, technology-driven and innovative studies.

Establishing model research facilities by an institution is not entirely novel, even within the scope of research in Nigeria and the University of Ilorin. Two models would appear to address this need in part. The first is the establishment of the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research (NIMR), located in Yaba, Lagos. The NIMR was established in 1977 through the Research Institute (Establishment etc.) Order having inherited, the assets of its predecessor, the Medical Research Council of Nigeria established by Decree 1 of 1972. However a careful evaluation of the Institute’s activities would indicate that it has only been able to provide limited support to the myriad of research needs in the country. There is hardly a formal linkage with other Universities and collaborations with the Institute are to a large extent individualized. All of these have impacted negatively on the ability of the Institute to drive high quality research that would fulfil the Country’s aspiration, encompassed in its vision of “Research for National Health ”. Even in climes where there is a robust National Institute for Health, such as the NIH in the United States, many of the Universities still complement such efforts through provision of world class research environments. Thus, there is still the need for the University of Ilorin, to strengthen its leadership position in medical training and research through the establishment of world-class medical research facilities.

The second model is that of the Central Research Laboratory. There is currently a Central Research Laboratory which is at the moment the expression of Unilorin’s desire to have a world class research facility. This desire has received a major boost from the fact that Unilorin is a beneficiary of the Federal Government’s Tertiary Education Intervention Fund, where ₦1.2 billion was spent on the construction and equipping of a Central Research Laboratory. However, considering the needs across the various Science and Engineering based faculties, the anticipated new Central Research Laboratory would only be meeting a fraction of the needs for high-tech research facilities in the pure and applied sciences. Furthermore, medical disciplines are intricately related and interdependent thereby raising the need for research resources to operate within a common pool but with added space for human subject sampling, observation and monitoring. These are conditions that cannot be totally fulfilled within the current set up of the Central Research Laboratory of the University.

Thus, the establishment of an Institute of Medical Research, with core competences in molecular and genetic research as well as clinical research, is hereby proposed as a shared cost effective research resource for the conduct of advanced biomedical research at the University of Ilorin.



College of Health Sciences


…a tool for development that is locally relevant and globally impacting

Our Vision:

“To be a world-class facility for conduct of research and training of personnel for human capacity building in the medical and related fields”.

Our Mission/ Purpose:

To provide the necessary facilities for carrying out high quality bio-medical research and training that would ultimately provide solutions to disorders and other challenges to effective health care delivery”.

Functions/ Strategies

  i.            To register, coordinate and support all research activities in the College through provision of specialised laboratory diagnostic facilities and laboratories with high-end facilities for research in the medical disciplines.

        ii.            To offer training with research components in relevant disciplines in medicine and allied health sciences leading to the award of relevant certificate, diploma, graduate or postgraduate degrees.

                iii.            To organise local, national and international workshops, seminars, conferences and Institute’s Research Fair annually for dissemination of the Institute’s research findings, exchange of ideas among colleagues from around the world and for the purpose of training and re-training of personnel in the medical and allied health professions in the conduct of high quality biomedical research.

                 iv.            To generate funds to supplement statutory subventions, to support its activities.

                   v.            To foster local, national, regional and international linkages for collaborative research.

                 vi.            To provide relevant consultancy services to  industries, parastatals, research institutions, Journals etc.

               vii.            To develop and submit sound research proposals which will attract grants nationally and internationally.

             viii.            To publish its research findings in reputable and high impact journals.

Where we operate (Location)

            IMRAT Complex, Old Faculty of Health Sciences Building within the premises of former University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital (now General Hospital, Ilorin).

Why we are here

IMRAT is a directorate of the University of Ilorin. Its establishment, structures and operations were approved by the University Senate and endorsed by the University Council. IMRAT exists to make remarkable contributions to the growth and development of University of Ilorin, the Ilorin Community, the People of Kwara State and Nigeria in general. IMRAT also exists to build linkages with other institutions locally and globally and foster networks that will add value to the achievement of her objectives.

Who we are

IMRAT brings together the best brains from all walks of life for best results. Within the University Community, it brings on board best brainpowers. From within the general population and international community, it brings generous Donors that will enable effective research and training to happen.  This translate to national development and better and healthier life for the teaming Nigerian and global population. Some of us are Advisors, some are Active Researchers and Trainers. Others are Implementers of research outcomes and some are Donors to enable our activities to happen. 

What we do

We build human capacity and develop human capital for our nation and other nations of the world. We also develop appropriate solutions to human problems.

How we do it

We do what we do through cutting-edge Research and Training that is locally relevant and globally impacting.

Contact Us:

Front Desk:          Director: