Chan Zuckerberg Initiative allots $68M for data-driven expansion of Human Cell Atlas

The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, the Redwood City, Calif.-based nonprofit founded by Priscilla Chan, MD, and Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, announced on June 21 the launch of a $68 million grant for the continued development of the Human Cell Atlas.

The three-year grant will be divided among 38 scientific teams from 20 countries and multiple disciplines, including computational biology, software engineering and medicine. These projects are tasked with producing new tools, open-source analysis methods and diverse data types for the Human Cell Atlas Data Coordination Platform, which enables collaborative data-sharing among the researchers around the globe attempting to map all the cells in the human body to create the Human Cell Atlas.

CZI has previously issued grants to 85 teams developing collaborative computational tools for the atlas, as well as 38 more pilot projects establishing new technologies, best practices and data analysis techniques for the construction of the atlas.

"The global Human Cell Atlas effort is a beacon for what can be accomplished when experts across scientific fields and time zones work together towards a common goal," Cori Bargmann, PhD, CZI's head of science, said in a statement. "With CZI's Seed Networks grants, we're excited to further support and build interdisciplinary collaborations that will accelerate progress towards a first draft of the Human Cell Atlas."

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