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Endor Awarded Bancaja ’08 Prize for Young Entrepreneurs

By 28 de January de 2009November 18th, 2020No Comments
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Endor Awarded Bancaja ’08 Prize for Young Entrepreneurs

The biotech firm , based at the Barcelona Science Park, received high honours at the 14th annual sponsored by the Bancaja Foundation. The competition seeks to stimulate entrepreneurship, provide support to new business initiatives undertaken by young people, and encourage innovation and socioeconomic development. This year's competition, which received more than 400 submissions from entrants throughout Spain, recognised only 40 of them, handing out a total of 425,000 euros in prize money.

The awards ceremony took place on Tuesday, 10 February, at 5 pm, at the Bancaja Cultural Centre in Valencia (Plaza de Tetuán, 23), the headquarters of the Bancaja Foundation. Bancaja Chairman José Luis Olivas was in attendance.

Endor CEO Joaquim Querol, recipient of 30,000 euros, noted that “this sort of financial assistance is critical for new companies to deal with immediate needs and pursue strategic areas of concern. That makes it a real value-add for R&D activity.” “In our case,” Querol added, “we’ve earmarked the funding for our portfolio of nanomedicine projects, which the firm intends to grow this year”.

Endor Nanotecnologies, which is one of the firms participating in the PCB-Santander Bioincubator at the Barcelona Science Park, was founded in 2006. Its mission is to conduct R&D projects in nanotechnology for the fields of biomedicine and cosmetics, and develop successful applications for the marketplace. Endor’s founders are the physicists Joaquim Querol and Víctor Puntes—Puntes also serves as director of the nanoparticles laboratory of the Catalan Institute of Nanotechnology (ICN)—the economist Javier Fernández and the biochemist Marc Ramis. The Endor team also includes the researchers Isaac Ojea, Judith Sendra and Víctor Ramos.

In the area of cosmetics, Endor has developed two products jointly with Infinitec Activos, another firm in the PCB-Santander Bioincubator. The two products administer their principal active ingredients through the use of gold and platinum nanoparticles, which facilitate skin absorption and penetration and increase efficacy as well. “The use of nanoparticles makes the products a thousand times more reactive”, emphasised Querol.

In the area of biomedicine, the firm designs specific strategies to improve diagnosis and treatment of a variety of diseases. In conjunction with the Catalan Institute of Nanotechnology, Endor is now working on a new magnetic nanoparticle that could be of use as a contrast agent in magnetic resonance imaging. Other lines of research address nanoparticles that could have value in enhancing the treatment of diseases such as cancer, central nervous system disorders, and cardiovascular illnesses.

Endor has recently received 175,000 euros in funding from the CIDEM program to encourage the creation of high-tech clusters. The funded project, which is being conducted jointly with the Institute of Photonic Sciences (ICFO), explores the light-nanoparticle interaction for medical applications. In addition, Endor is a member of the European project Nanosost, which is studying the potential health and environmental risks arising from the use of nanotechnologies.

The Bancaja Young Entrepreneurs Awards are presented annually in three different categories: biotech firms, companies in traditional and/or social sectors, and business start-ups. Endor was one of the ten winners in the biotech category and the only winner based in Barcelona or Catalonia.