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Grants to USA, Canada, and International Researchers
for Studies Related to Rare Pediatric Diseases

Patient-Partnered Collaborations for Single-Cell Analysis of Rare Inflammatory Pediatric Disease

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI)

Deadline Date:

05/24/22 5:00 PM Pacific Time


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Grants to USA, Canada, and International researchers affiliated with nonprofit organizations, institutions, IHEs, and government agencies for research related to rare pediatric diseases. Funding is intended for studies addressing the workings and identification of pediatric inflammatory diseases.

The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative invites applications from collaborative teams bringing together patient-led rare disease organizations and research teams for 4-year research projects aimed at advancing an understanding of the fundamental science of rare diseases. The Patient-Partnered Collaborations for Single-Cell Analysis of Rare Inflammatory Pediatric Disease RFA aims to support the application of single-cell biology methods to rare inflammatory pediatric diseases that will clarify cellular mechanisms of disease, understand disease heterogeneity, and improve biomarker identification or diagnostics.

The overarching goal is to support interdisciplinary teams as they characterize the cellular mechanisms underlying rare inflammatory diseases, including possible identification of biomarkers and elucidation of disease pathways that will clarify disease stratification or identify therapeutic opportunities. Patient organizations are expected to be active collaborators on this research opportunity and full partners in the development of the grant application to directly inform research questions that will have the greatest impact on rare disease patients, and to engage in study design, patient engagement, and research dissemination. Applications for this funding opportunity should be focused on single-cell analysis of rare pediatric diseases with a specific interest in clarifying those with a distinct or primary inflammatory pathology.

Priority will be given to applications that address health disparities or focus on rare diseases that predominantly affect underrepresented populations, particularly ancestries that are underrepresented in biomedical research. Additionally, the Foundation hopes the network of teams funded by this RFA will generate and disseminate solutions that enable the ethical collection and sharing of rare disease patient biospecimens, taking into consideration the challenges associated with the vulnerable status of pediatric and rare disease donors. These include but are not limited to engagement with communities and families/patients, ancestral diversity, and storing tissue for subsequent analysis.

Specific project focus areas may include, but are not limited to:

  • Understanding the pathophysiology of rare inflammatory pediatric diseases at the cellular and molecular levels
  • Application of single-cell methods to identify expression profiles, pathways, cell-types, or states involved in disease diagnosis, progression, or to clarify heterogeneity among individuals impacted by a single, or related, rare disease
  • Developing new experimental and analytical tools to dissect rare inflammatory diseases at the single-cell level
  • Identification of predictive and diagnostic biomarkers to understand disease progression and which biological and inflammatory features drive rare disease severity
  • Improving patient stratification/classification through application of single-cell approaches
  • Expanding disease modeling for rare disease translational research and connecting understudied genes to model systems, including clarifying how variants of unknown significance manifest in differing cellular pathology

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 202739

Estimated Size of Grant:

Awards are $2,000,000 USD total costs for four years for each project.

Term of Contract:

The award period for each RFA is for an initial two years of funding, followed by an additional two years, pending evaluation. The expected start date is December 1, 2022.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Researchers/Research Institutions:
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.
Research institutions may be based in any country.

Applications will each have two lead Principal Investigators (PIs): one representing the research team and the other representing the patient organization. Teams should be made up of a minimum of two investigators with a maximum of five investigators, including the patient organization leader. For additional information regarding PIs and their responsibilities, see the URL for Full Text (RFP).

The Foundation believes that the strongest teams incorporate a wide range of voices. Those underrepresented in science and technology are strongly encouraged to apply. This includes but is not limited to women, those with disabilities, underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, LGBTQ individuals, and organizations representing disease areas that disproportionately impact underrepresented or underserved communities.

Patient Organizations:
- Patient organizations must be patient-led rare disease organizations (advocacy groups, disease foundations or organizations that represent patients, engage patients in key leadership roles—e.g., as founder, executive director, board member, key staff, etc.—and are patient-centered in their programming).
- Patient organizations must be organizations that are tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the United States Internal Revenue Code, OR have a valid fiscal sponsor that is tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, OR a 501(c)(3) charity/non-profit organization equivalent for non-US based organizations. Non-US based organizations will be subject to Equivalency Determination.
- Patient organizations must be focused on a rare disease, disorder, or syndrome, or group of closely related rare diseases, disorders, or syndromes (defined, for instance, as a condition that affects fewer than 200,000 people in the U.S., or no more than 1 in 2,000 people in the European Union).

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

This RFA is intended to support early stage research on rare pediatric inflammatory diseases with sparse scientific research to date. It is not intended to further already mature areas of rare disease research, such as those supported by large organizations with extensive research programs or areas funded by governmental funding (e.g., NIH or the equivalent). The Foundation will prioritize support for patient organizations with annual research budgets less than $5 million.

Pre-Application Information:

Key Dates:
February 1, 2022: Application portal opens
May 24, 2022: Applications due by 5 p.m. Pacific Time
Late October 2022: Earliest notification of decisions (subject to change)
December 1, 2022: Expected start date of award period

Applicants are welcome to apply to both this opportunity and the Patient-Partnered Collaborations for Rare Neurodegenerative Disease RFA; however, the application and scope of work must be distinct.

Researchers/Research Institutions:
- More than one application will be accepted from each research institution.
- Each Coordinating PI and patient organization may only submit one application to this RFA.

Patient Organizations:
- Each patient organization may only be represented in one application to this RFA.
- Lead Patient Organization PIs may only be named on one application.

View the February 16th Information Session video:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.


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

For technical assistance with SMApply, please contact

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Alaska;   Arizona;   Arkansas;   California;   Colorado;   Connecticut;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Hawaii;   Idaho;   Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   Montana;   Nebraska;   Nevada;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New Mexico;   New York City;   New York;   North Carolina;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Oregon;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   South Carolina;   South Dakota;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Utah;   Vermont;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   Washington;   West Virginia;   Wisconsin;   Wyoming

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

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)

Canada: Alberta;   British Columbia;   Manitoba;   New Brunswick;   Newfoundland and Labrador;   Northwest Territories;   Nova Scotia;   Nunavut;   Ontario;   Prince Edward Island;   Quebec;   Saskatchewan;   Yukon;


International country outside of the USA, Israel and Canada.

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