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Grants to USA, Canada, and International Researchers Affiliated with Nonprofits for Projects Related to Single-Cell Biology and Data Science

Single-Cell Biology Data Insights Grant


GrantWatch ID#

Funding Source
Array ( [0] => American Samoa (USA); [1] => Guam (USA); [2] => Puerto Rico (USA); [3] => Virgin Islands (USA); [4] => Northern Mariana Islands (USA); )

Geographic Focus
USA Territories: American Samoa (USA);   Guam (USA);   Puerto Rico (USA);   Virgin Islands (USA);   Northern Mariana Islands (USA);
USA Compact Free Associations:The Federated States of Micronesia (USA)   Marshall Islands (USA)   Republic of Palau (USA)
International, Israel and Canada.

Important Dates
Deadline: 12/05/23 5:00 PM PT Save

Grant Description
Grants to USA, Canada, and International researchers affiliated with nonprofit organizations, IHEs, or government agencies for projects related to biology and data science. The purpose of funding is to improve analysis methods of existing large-scale datasets related to single-cell biology. Eligible projects may include dedicated efforts to democratize access and usability of existing datasets; demonstration of utility by leveraging existing datasets to address impactful and challenging biological questions; and developing methods that enable greater biological insight and other major challenges brought forward.

The goal of this opportunity is to create a network of projects that address broad computational challenges and needs within single-cell biology at a variety of scales. Applicants may highlight existing or prospective collaboration among projects, but should note that all applications will be reviewed for their individual merit and impact.

Single-cell biology has undergone rapid growth over the last five years, with a recent increase in the volume of available and openly accessible datasets and cell atlases, including the release of the 37+ million cells CZ CELLxGENE Discover Census. This funding opportunity is specifically intended to motivate and incentivize the development, refinement, and implementation of approaches that make it possible for greater insights to be gained from available single-cell data.

Projects must propose and rely on existing data that is openly and freely available (count matrices at minimum) at the time of application via the inclusion of a link to specific datasets in the applications. Furthermore, CZI strongly encourages applications to use data generated outside of their labs to enable interoperability and advances that are extensible to a wider segment of interested researchers. 

Successful proposals are likely to incorporate some, or multiple, of the following attributes:

  • Meta-analysis of single-cell datasets or collections, such as available via CZ CELLxGENE Discover Census, that highlights its characteristics, usability, and utility and enables insight into more specific biological questions and unlock mysteries of the cell and how cells interact in systems.
  • Address specific challenges, such as predicting cellular responses to perturbations, modeling regulatory networks, understanding evolutionary differences at the cellular level or cellular basis of traits and diseases, system-level delineation of lineage establishment, or deciphering cell-cell interactions and spatial organization.
  • Democratize access and usability of existing datasets. For example, the development of subsampling approaches or scalable and accessible models for data representation (embeddings), querying, and downstream tasks of broad interest.
  • Applications of AI and machine learning to open problems in single-cell biology with a possible focus on infusing domain knowledge in a model and experimental design and development of novel training paradigms or model evaluation strategies.
  • Connecting data across scales and modalities.
  • Using data from underrepresented ancestries or populations.

It is also an explicit goal of this effort to build a community among international participants that encourages collaboration and coordination, and CZI envisions that the overlap between funding cycles will allow continuity and learning. CZI will support the coordination of this community and promote opportunities for training, documentation, and knowledge sharing across projects and cycles.


Additional Eligibility Criteria
Applications may be submitted by domestic and foreign nonprofit organizations, public and private institutions, such as colleges, universities, hospitals, laboratories, units of state and local government, and eligible agencies of the federal government. For-profit organizations are not eligible to receive funding but may be involved in projects as a collaborator. All grants will be awarded to institutions, not individuals.

There may be more than one application submitted by each organization.

Each application should designate one Principal Investigator (PI) as the Coordinating Principal Investigator (Coordinating PI). The Coordinating PI will act as the administrative contact between CZI and all other PIs on the grant (Co-PIs). The Coordinating PI must submit the application on behalf of all PIs. The Coordinating PI must be affiliated with the institution submitting the application, and grant funds will be awarded to that institution, which will take responsibility for distributing funds to any other institutions. Note that institutions outside the U.S. may not subcontract to U.S. institutions, so please be mindful when selecting the Coordinating PI/institution.

PIs/Co-PIs on one application may be employed at the same or at different institutions.

PIs and Co-PIs must each be permitted to receive grant support by the organization they are applying with.

Early-career investigators are strongly encouraged to apply as Coordinating PIs as well as Co-PIs.

The strongest teams incorporate a wide range of voices. Those underrepresented in science and technology are strongly encouraged to apply.

For more information on eligibility, please see

Meta employees, including employees of any subsidiary Meta entities, as well as employees of Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, LLC, are not permitted to apply.

Funding is not intended to support experimental data generation. Any form of data generation is considered out of scope.

Pre-Application Information
Key Dates
- September 19, 2023: Cycle 3 Application opening date
- December 5, 2023: Cycle 3 Applications due by 5 PM Pacific Time
- Late June 2024: Cycle 3 Earliest notification of decisions (subject to change)
- August 1, 2024: Cycle 3 Earliest start date (subject to change)

International grantees must use all grant funds exclusively for activities conducted outside the United States of America. Travel expenses to the United States must not be covered from the requested grant funds.

Estimated Size of Grant
Grants will be awarded at two levels:
- Focused Projects: $200,000 USD total costs (inclusive of up to 15 percent indirect costs) for grants that primarily support the effort of one to two full-time employees (FTEs) working on a given project.
- Expanded Projects: $400,000 USD total costs (inclusive of up to 15 percent indirect costs) for networked grants that will require the participation of two to four FTEs.

Term of Contract
Award period and start date: Proposed projects should be 18 months; expected start date for awards in Cycle 3 is August 1, 2024.

Contact Information
Apply Online:

For administrative and programmatic inquiries, or other questions pertaining to this RFA, please contact

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