Deep Tissue Imaging (Phase 2)

Funding Agency:
Chan Zuckerberg Initiative

The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) invites applications for four-year projects in the field of deep tissue imaging. To gain a deeper mechanistic understanding of biological systems, CZI’s Imaging program aims to visualize and measure them across biological scales and in their biological context. This Request for Applications (RFA) seeks to drive development of imaging technology focused on obtaining cellular resolution readouts within complex living organisms. This grant program will advance the field of deep tissue imaging, which aims to obtain cellular resolution in complex tissue and through skin and bone.


  • Required Letter of Intent: July 11, 2023
  • Invited Full Proposals: Sep. 26, 2023

Agency Website

Areas of Interest

The long-term goal of this opportunity is to drive technology development aimed at visualizing cellular structure and function throughout the body. We especially seek proposals that support the development of tools for visualizing cellular-level processes in deep tissue. This funding opportunity is explicitly aimed at technology development. It is not intended to support question-driven basic or translational research, clinical trials, or drug development.

Examples of research themes:

  • Adaptive optics for deep tissue imaging
  • Bioacoustic probe, hardware, and/or method development
  • Biomagnetic probe, hardware, and/or method development
  • Biochemical probe or method development
  • Multi-photon hardware or method development
  • Quantum technologies for deep tissue imaging
  • Deep tissue imaging techniques with potential applicability to the human body

Eligibility Requirements

  • Eligibility is not limited to CZI Deep Tissue Imaging Phase 1 grant awardees. 
  • Applications may be submitted by domestic and foreign nonprofit and for-profit organizations, public and private institutions, such as colleges, universities, hospitals, laboratories, units of state and local government, companies, and eligible agencies of the federal government. As part of the application process, for-profit organizations may need to provide additional information on the charitable purposes of the proposal. Grants are not permitted to individuals, only to organizations.
  • 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 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.
  • Each application should have a minimum of one PI (Coordinating PI), but may designate up to six total PIs (one Coordinating PI and up to five Co-PIs).
  • PIs may only serve as the Coordinating PI on one application, but may serve as a Co-PI on applications different from the one they submitted.
  • Co-PIs may serve as a Co-PI on multiple applications.
  • PIs/Co-PIs on one application may be employed at the same or at different institutions. 
  • PIs and Co-PIs must hold a PhD, MD, or equivalent degree.
  • PIs and Co-PIs must each run laboratories in which they control their budget, their space, and their research. Independence in an academic setting is typically demonstrated by a full-time faculty appointment, a tenure-track position, allocated space, a start-up package, and institutional commitment as defined or verified in a letter from a department chair or equivalent. Independence may be defined differently in other organizations. Note: an upload of the letter or proof of independence is not required at the time of application.
  • CZI encourages applications from underrepresented populations, women, and early-career scientists.

Funding Type



Women and minorities encouraged


Engineering and Physical Sciences
Environmental & Life Sciences
Medical - Basic Science

External Deadline

July 11, 2023