“Build Their Lab” Competition Details

Tekla Labs has surveyed twenty labs from countries throughout Latin American and Africa to identify the specific equipment needs of researchers around the globe.  We found that over 50% of researchers surveyed are in need of and would be willing to build their own:

microscopes, media rotators, fluorometers, sterilization equipment, spectrophotometers, PCR machines, incubators, water baths, hot plate/magnetic stirrers, pH meters, electrophoresis chambers, sonicators, UV lamps, tissue culture hoods, centrifuges, and ELISA plate readers.

By submitting a design for one of these pieces of equipment to our Instructables competition, you are not only eligible to win one of our grand prizes AND a 3D printer, but also will be providing a real life solution for a researcher in need!

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Meet the scientists

So who are these researchers you will be helping? We have formed partnerships with many wonderful scientists from a number of different settings worldwide – including university research labs, government research facilities, and high school and university classrooms. The map above outlines the locations of all our international partners; and the pictures are of our featured scientists, who you can learn more about in the bios below!

Featured Researchers:

Johann Osma, PhD: Johann is a faculty member in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Electronics at Universidad de los Andes in Bogota, Colombia.  His lab focuses on the design and manufacturing of biosensors and microsystems, especially those dedicated to microfluidics, for food and environmental security and monitoring.  Half of his lab conducts research while the other half is dedicated to building equipment so that the former can focus on their research instead of having to solve minor problems related to the operation and test of devices.

Amparo Zavaleta, PhD: Amparo is a faculty member in the Department of Pharmacy and Biochemistry at the Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos in Lima, Peru. Her research focuses on the use of microbial biodiversity of extreme ecological niches for the production of enzymes and metabolites of industrial interest.

Matthew Stremlau, PhD: Matt Stremlau is a postdoctoral fellow at the Broad Institute in Cambridge, MA where he uses next-generation sequencing to study fevers of unknown origin in West Africa.  Matt also works with scientists in Nigeria and Uganda to develop technology for locally identifying emerging pathogens with PCR assays.