Interview: Modesto Orozco (Nostrum Biodiscovery President)


(N) Modesto, can you give us a few insights into your professional career?

I am a chemist and biochemist from the Autonomous University of Barcelona. I did the master’s degree in biochemistry and also the doctorate from this university.
Later I got a position as a full professor, in fact, the same year that I read my doctorate I went to the United States as a visiting professor, I was there for two and a half years, and I returned to my position as university professor.
Later, when the Barcelona Park Cientific was created, I joined there. That evolved into the IRB, and I also joined the BSC. I was department director there for almost 10 years and thus combining the two positions and now I am director of research nodes.

(N) What attracted you to science?

It couldn’t have been anything else. I always wanted to be a scientist; there was no option two.

(N) What was the transition from scientist to entrepreneur and founder of Nostrum like?

I believe that there has not been a transition, that is, I am a scientist and currently I have a company; but it is a scientific enterprise.
I would consider myself an entrepreneur if I had created a transport company of merchandise or pizzas, but a scientific enterprise is another way of doing the same thing.
I’m not very good at thinking about these things too much. In general, throughout my career, things have happened.
They have happened because they have happened, not because there was planning.

(N) Besides this, what other things pique your interest?

I like everything that involves knowledge. I am interested in history, history of art, philosophy…
Philosophy is something that is called that belongs to letters. It makes me nervous because I hate letters. The mental structure of the philosopher is the structure of a mathematician, and this is interesting.

(N) What is your role at Nostrum Biodiscovery?

Technically I am the founder. My task is to transfer what we have learned, a correct academic point of view.
I believe that my fundamental role is, as Donald Trump said, to be a cheerleader; Encourage people, increase confidence, convince them that making mistakes is part of the job.
It is trying to maintain a scientific stress. A scientific enterprise based on science is easy to accommodate; It’s human nature. The life of a scientist is a life of pain. You must live with the pain, with the feeling of being an imposter. People think you’re very smart and you know you’re not.
You know that there are an infinite number of things that you don’t know. You have the feeling that it took you a week to understand something, someone else understood it in a day.

(N) What new developments are expected from Nostrum Biodiscovery in the next 2 years?

The challenge is to have resources to be able to evolve to position ourselves in a more intense way. In some way becoming an incubator like there are others, we would not be the first to do so.
Not only to provide service to others, but to develop our own products.