Biotechnology Students from Universidad Andrés Bello Receive Global Recognition

A group of five students, Pablo González, Patricio Ávila, Cristóbal Curkovic, Gabriela González and María Ignacia von Unger from the biotechnology engineering program at Universidad Andrés Bello won the “Science and Technology Excellence Award” at the Tech-I Competition. Created by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the competition is one of the most important global events focused on promoting entrepreneurship. 

Just over a year ago, the students created Platech, a company that is developing a technology that aims to change the way that laboratories work and would put Chile on the map for biotechnology entrepreneurship. The technology, a synthetic platelet extract, would eliminate the need to utilize animal blood in research. 

The team, one of 794 teams from around the world, were one of 30 finalists. “To represent Chile and UNAB in this competition was amazing,” said Ávila, chief executive officer of Platech. “We had to go to Nairobi in Kenya for the finals. It was an enriching experience and has helped us create new contacts that will be vital in our continuing work.”