The Clarkson Campus is a pre-eminent facility for studying the biology of complex disorders in large animal models to better understand major human diseases. The 200-acre campus is approximately 10 miles from the main campus of the Wake Forest School of Medicine. The primary activities at the Campus are research, training and outreach.

For over fifty years, School of Medicine researchers have conducted research at the Clarkson Campus using a variety of animal models, with the majority of research entailing the use of nonhuman primates.

Training at the Clarkson Campus includes programs designed to teach pre- and post-doctoral veterinarians how to conduct biomedical research. In addition, researchers welcome students from local colleges and universities throughout the school year and summer months and provide a unique training opportunity.

The extensive outreach program serves both scientists and the lay community. Scientific outreach extends to investigators at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, the national Clinical and Translational Institute network, and other research institutions across the country that require expertise, infrastructure, and animal models for biomedical studies. The Campus also has a large community outreach program that has brought more than 4,000 visitors (mostly students) to our facility to learn more about biomedical research careers and the importance of research in improving human health.

Campus History

The School of Medicine has a distinguished history of nonhuman primate research, beginning in the early 1960s with Thomas B. Clarkson, DVM. He identified the original tract of land for the research campus in 1963 and led the effort to secure funding to build office, animal care, and laboratory facilities. Through the years, the campus has been known by different names, including the Comparative Medicine Clinical Research Center and Primate Center. In 2015, the Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center Board of Directors officially renamed the campus to the Thomas B Clarkson, Jr Campus to honor and recognize the enormous contributions and accomplishments achieved during his research career.