Chan Zuckerberg Biohub Awards $13.7M for Collaborative Research Programs

Awards Will Also Fund New Microbiome Initiative

Mark Zuckerberg speaks at the September 2016 announcement of the CZ Biohub
Facebook CEO and philanthropist Mark Zuckerberg announces the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative’s first investment in science at a September 2016 event at UCSF Mission Bay. Photo by Drew Altizer Photography

The Chan Zuckerberg Biohub (CZ Biohub) announced awards of $13.7 million over three years for seven teams that include researchers from UC Berkeley, Stanford University and UC San Francisco.

The awards will fund the CZ Biohub Microbiome Initiative and the CZ Biohub Intercampus Research Awards, both of which are new programs.

portrait of Joe DeRisi
Joe DeRisi, PhD

“For the first time, these new awards bring together highly talented investigators from all three campuses to collaborate on promising new approaches to major biomedical problems,” said Joe DeRisi, PhD, professor of biochemistry and biophysics at UCSF and co-president of CZ Biohub. “By drawing on the strengths of all three institutions, we believe these teams will accomplish what is now beyond the reach of individual investigators.”

The CZ Biohub Microbiome Initiative, launched as a pilot program earlier this year, provides $4 million over three years for research on the community of microbes within the human body that influence many aspects of health, from nutrition and immune function to drug metabolism. The Microbiome Initiative brings together eight leading microbiome experts from all three campuses based on their highly complementary and synergistic research interests.

“With its unique model of multi-institutional collaboration, the Chan Zuckerberg Biohub has become a keystone of the Bay Area ecosystem of innovation,” said UCSF Chancellor Sam Hawgood, MBBS. “The new research awards program and the Microbiome Initiative further strengthen the scientific and technological bonds Biohub has already forged among UCSF, Stanford, and UC Berkeley. We look forward to working with our partner institutions on these exciting new projects to advance knowledge and human health.”

The CZ Biohub, launched in September 2016, is an independent nonprofit research organization formed as a collaboration among UCSF, UC Berkeley and Stanford University with the goal of inventing new tools to accelerate transformative advances in the life sciences.

“We launched the Biohub to bring together some of the brightest scientific minds in the Bay Area with world-class engineering teams, in order to help accelerate the pace of discovery and make faster progress in the fight against disease,” Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg, co-founders of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, said in a statement. “Just two years after its launch, it is incredible to see how the Biohub has helped spark promising new collaborations, tools, and research to enable and empower the entire scientific community.”

Read the Chan Zuckerberg Biohub press release for more information and a full list of the projects »