REQUEST FOR APPLICATIONS: Visual Proteomics Imaging

Funding Agency:
Chan Zuckerberg Initiative

The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative invites applications for challenge grants in the field of Visual Proteomics. This Request for Applications (RFA) aims to advance technology directed at the goal of obtaining near-atomic resolution readouts inside the cell.

The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) seeks to support 2.5-year challenge grants in the field of visual proteomics. The ability to view protein molecules in cells and monitor changes in their structure, quantity, distribution, and interactions is key to understanding what causes diseases and finding treatments and cures. This grant program will advance technology development for the field of visual proteomics and aim to obtain near-atomic resolution readouts inside the cell. The funding mechanism will be targeted investments in the form of challenge grants with specified proof-of-concept milestones.

The long-term goal of this RFA, part of CZI’s Frontiers of Imaging effort, is to drive technology development aimed at visualizing proteins and their interactions inside the cell. 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. Preliminary data is encouraged but not required.

Deadline: Feb. 17, 2021

Agency Website

Eligibility Requirements

● Applications may be submitted by non-profit 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. ● Organizations may be based in any country. ● 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, but may designate up to three total PIs (one Coordinating PI and up to two 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.

We particularly encourage applications from: ● Researchers in disciplines outside of biomedicine who bring new technology, resources, or frameworks to studying proteins and their interactions inside of cells; ● Women, underrepresented minorities, and members of underserved populations; and ● Early-career investigators, defined as principal investigators who have been in an independent faculty role for less than six years at the time of application, i.e. starting after their first position after February 2015.

Funding Type



Women and minorities encouraged


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

External Deadline

February 17, 2021