Versiti - Investing in Hope | Versiti Blood Research Institute

Investing in Hope

Versiti Blood Research Institute Capital Campaign

Wisconsin has a unique opportunity to be an international leader in advancing treatments and cures for blood diseases and cancers through the expansion of the Versiti Blood Research Institute campus. Versiti is planning a 65,000 square foot addition to the existing VBRI campus located on the Milwaukee Regional Medical Center to expand its research activities, specifically in the areas of blood cancers, cellular therapy, and immunology.

  • State-of-the-art research facility that will attract the best and brightest scientists to Wisconsin
  • 2026 estimated completion date
  • Blood conditions, such as leukemia, thrombosis, sickle cell disease, and hemophilia have no geographic boundary. They impact every community across the nation.
  • The expansion of BRI’s research capacity through the new addition will promote discovery of novel, more effective and less toxic therapies for a broad range of conditions that affect millions, positively impacting the health of residents across the state, nation, and the international community.
  • Versiti’s blood research is translational and clinical, meaning that it will ultimately impact patients through cutting edge discoveries that lead to new treatments and cures.
  • The expansion will also enhance Versiti’s ability to collaborate with other research institutes both locally and nationally.

  • Ranked #1 nationally in terms of grant funding for a blood research institute.
  • Ranked # 1 in Wisconsin in National Institutes of Health (NIH) grant dollars per principal investigator and in the top 4 in Wisconsin in terms of overall NIH funding
  • 26 principal investigators
  • 50 active research grants
  • 200 patent applications
  • 57 licenses and options
  • Findings were published in more than 200 respected medical and research journals in 2022
  • Key collaboration partner for the Medical College of Wisconsin, Froedtert Hospital, and Childrens’ Hospital
  • VBRI’s life-saving discoveries have improved medical practice in immeasurable ways
  • For example, Versiti's researchers invented the technology that enabled organ transplantation between unrelated individuals, which made organ transplant available to a much broader population, saving the lives of tens of thousands of patients without any other treatment options
  • VBRI has also contributed to our nation’s health and security as a top advisor to the Department of Defense and National Institutes of Health. Recent examples include discovering therapies and other solutions to combat COVID-19, as well as conducting research on treating soldiers who suffer hemorrhages in battle.
  • Versiti has the leadership and resources to recruit and hire an additional 15-20 laboratory-based investigators and 5 clinical investigators, but the BRI has run out of space.

  • Wisconsin has a unique opportunity to be a national leader in advancing treatments and cures for blood diseases and cancers that disproportionately affect the Underserved.
  • By expanding Versiti’s research work, appropriate resources can also be devoted to diseases, such as sickle cell disease, thrombosis, and hemophilia, which disproportionately affect the Underserved, to improve health outcomes and reduce health care spending.
  • Current underrepresentation of the Underserved in research places these populations at a significant disadvantage for each of several reasons:
    • Access to experimental, yet potentially lifesaving, treatments is delayed;
    • Data generated are not representative of the Underserved, potentially leading to incorrect assessment of risk and benefit, with the real risk that the Underserved will be left behind in receiving effective treatment; and
    • Progress in diseases that are mostly limited to the Underserved (such as sickle cell disease to African Americans) is hampered by slow trial accrual.
  • The BRI expansion will draw on Versiti's existing strong relationships with the Wisconsin sickle cell disease and hemophilia communities to provide research-based solutions and therapies.
  • Expanding Versiti research in immunology and cellular therapy will contribute to developing novel less toxic and more effective immunotherapies to treat cancers.
  • This research will not only improve patient outcomes for Underserved Wisconsinites, but also for Underserved populations throughout the nation.

  • The expansion will also improve the health of our local and state economy by:
  • Creating Jobs: more than 100 new high paying jobs
  • Attracting Top Talent: Draw brilliant minds from across the nation and the world. Nearly all these principal investigator positions are likely to be filled by persons who currently reside outside of the State of Wisconsin.
  • Increasing Research Grant Funding: an estimated additional $14M annually in grant funding is expected to be generated through the expanded research capabilities.
  • Benefiting Wisconsin’s Economy: over 30 years, the expansion will generate a total economic impact of nearly $580M to the State of Wisconsin by driving additional state tax revenue over that same period of approximately $19M. (This estimate also accounts for investments in construction jobs and the impact of new families moving to Wisconsin due to the BRI job creation.)
  • Strengthening and Growing the BioTech Sector: Discoveries made in the expanded BRI will lead to start-up biotech companies with the potential to bring high-paying jobs to Wisconsin, increasing its economic activity and tax base.
Scientific Programs
Scientific research and training are important parts of Versiti’s mission. Our research programs involve basic and clinical scientists at Versiti Blood Research Institute.
About Us
Versiti is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) blood health organization with locations across the Midwest. Its world-class capabilities blood donation, innovative research and state-of-the-art diagnostic testing.
Versiti Blood Research Institute
Versiti Blood Research Institute investigators study blood disorders like hemophilia, blood cancers like leukemia, and other blood diseases.