Genzyme Corporation: Grants for Disease

OVERVIEW: This funder is passionate about disease funding, and has a wide range of research interests, from rare genetic conditions to cardiovascular diseases, cancer and more. It has a global funding reach and donates millions of dollars each year, as well as products and skills. 

IP TAKE: Although Genzyme made its reputation for work in rare genetic diseases, don't pigeonhole it. MS is a big priority, and so is work focusing on its home state of Massachusetts. Pitch a proposal for caregiving, research or awareness.

PROFILE: Genzyme (a fully owned subsidiary of Sanofi) was founded in Boston in 1981, and has become one of the largest biotech companies in the world. The company is located in Cambridge, MA, which is home to several top universities, teaching hospitals and a thriving biotech community of which Genzyme is a part. But the company operates in all regions of the globe. It’s known for having expertise in rare lysosomal storage disorders, but has expanded to other disease areas like multiple sclerosis and thyroid cancer.

This biotech funder contributes to philanthropy through in-kind donations and volunteerism with direct financial support. In a recent year, Genzyme donated $114 million worth of its products and thousands of hours of its scientists' time for humanitarian research. Genzyme support has a global reach, and the largest corporate donations typically go toward major initiatives in science or healthcare by museums, research institutions, and humanitarian organizations. For example, the Museum of Science in Boston has regularly received Genzyme’s support. Other areas of support include event sponsorships, community group funding and research fellowships.

With a goal to improve health standards worldwide, Genzyme supports hospitals, research institutions, disease organizations and medical education programs. These grants typically have a therapeutic focus. Genzyme also supports nonprofits in the fields of science education, healthcare, and community needs in the communities it operates in. In a recent year, the funder committed over $1.6 million in community relations contributions to about 100 nonprofits. You can view a list of recent and featured nonprofit grantees on Genzyme’s Contributions and Giving page.

Nonprofits and educational institutions that work in the areas of the U.S. where Genzyme does business can apply for grants, a process that takes between eight and 16 weeks. These are the four therapeutic areas of primary interest for this funder:

  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Rare Genetic Diseases
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Thyroid Cancer

Other lesser areas of interest that Genzyme may consider include research in these areas:

  • Diabetes
  • Renal, immune-mediated diseases
  • Neurobiology
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Gene therapies
  • Biomaterials

This corporate funder’s community relations support typically extends to healthcare access, science education and unmet community needs. Grantseekers can apply for a contribution online: The Genzyme contributions coordinator can be reached via online form, or by phone at 877-GENZYME ext. 14040. Applications are accepted throughout the year.

Additionally, Genzyme’s Patient Advocacy Leadership (PAL) Awards program supports the work of patient organizations focused on lysosomal storage disorders to bring about disease awareness and patient support. This program was launched in 2011, and is open to nonprofit patient organizations, academic institutions and professional associations. A total of $50,000 will be awarded through two competitive grants, funding new initiatives that support this community. Applicants can apply for a maximum grant amount of $25,000. You can learn more about the application process on the PAL Awards page.


  • Search for staff contact info and bios in PeopleFinder (paid subscribers only.)