Undergrads form Biomedical Startup


L/R: Tucker King, Juliana Downey, Elizabeth Rebholz and Kim Wyluda

February 2017. Tech Wound Solutions is a biomedical startup that formed during a special-topics course. The team is made up of four seniors; three in chemical engineering and one in mechanical engineering. Jules Downey, Tucker King, Elisabeth Rebholz, and Kim Wyluda have taken their commercialization of biomedical engineering research to the next level.

Across the United States, 6.5 million chronic wound care patients lack a true gold standard treatment to heal their wounds. Over $25 billion is spent annually in the United States on the treatment of chronic wounds due to the underlying and rapid growth in healthcare costs, an aging population, obesity, and diabetes occurrence. Currently, more than 3,000 products in this market fail to effectively treat wounds and are often pushed into the market by large companies as "me-too" products.

Tech Wound Solutions aims to disrupt the wound care market using an unconventional approach to set a new gold standard treatment for chronic wounds with their product, Kare Powder. Kare Powder is an active wound care product that enables more effective and faster healing for patients with chronic wounds by employing a unique Trojan Horse technology and initiating the self-destruction of bacteria in infected wounds. Kare Powder is an innovative technology and a disruptive approach to commercialization in the wound care market.

This past year, Tech Wound Solutions has competed in numerous competitions. Their win at the ACC InVenture Prize @ Virginia Tech in November 2016 led them to compete in the regional ACC InVenture Prize @ Georgia Tech in March 2017. They placed second out of the fifteen ACC schools, bringing home $10,000 to put towards their project. More recently, they took home the People’s Choice Award at the VT KnowledgeWorks’ Global Challenge, winning $5,000 in scholarship money.

Team members:
  • Juliana Downey is a fifth-year in mechanical engineering from Moorestown, New Jersey with a minor in biomedical engineering. Juliana has been working with her senior capstone design project tackling a kinematic design problem to improve the performance of bicyclists on varying terrain. Juliana's past internships and co-ops have dealt with manufacturing and product line development.
  • Tucker King is a fifth-year chemical engineering student from West Chester, Pennsylvania. He has been a Healthcare Analyst for VT SEED since his sophomore year, assisting in the management of a $5.0 million student-run investment portfolio. Tucker has two previous internships as a Financial Analyst at NVR, Inc. Tucker’s past co-ops have been with GE Aviation, where he worked as an Operations & Manufacturing co-op, and with Medtronic, where he worked as a supplier quality engineering co-op.
  • Elisabeth Rebholz is a senior chemical engineering student from Ashburn, Virginia with a minor in biomedical engineering and chemistry. She has been working in a stem cell research lab for the past two years, determining different ways to differentiate stem cells into beating heart cells. She also obtained an internship in spring 2016 at BioTherapeutics, Inc. and worked to test a type II diabetes nutritional product on an animal model to take it to market in spring 2017.
  • Kim Wyluda is a senior in Chemical Engineering with a minor in Biomedical Engineering from Montgomery, New Jersey. She works on campus as an undergraduate research assistant, performing experiments regarding the use of nanoparticles as drug delivery agents. In previous summers, she worked as a translational medicine intern for BioTherapeutics Inc. and studied abroad at the Technical University of Denmark.


  • Learn more about Tech Wound Solutions at:
    http://www.beam.vt.edu/about/newsStory.php?id=199
    http://www.insidevtknowledgeworks.com/2016/11/acc-inventure-prize-virginia-tech-winner-announced.html
    https://www.alyintheatl.com/blog/2017/4/2/the-2017-acc-inventure-prize-aka-youve-done-nothing-with-your-life-compared-with-these-college-students/