Ramón Pla Armengol (Alentorn-Lleida 1880 – Barcelona 1956)
Father of Doña Nuria Pla, graduated in medicine at the University of Barcelona and practiced as physician in Albesa (Lleida). After obtaining the PhD in 1904 he was part of the medical staff of the Hospital de la Santa Creu in Barcelona and of the Municipal Laboratory of bacteriology. His huge interest in the study of tuberculosis, a disease causing havoc at the time, was the focus of his professional career. He was also a member of the Academy of Hygiene and co-founder of the Union of Physicians of Catalonia in 1920. In 1922 he founded his own laboratory “Institut Ravetllat Pla”, together with the veterinarian Joaquim Ravetllat Estech, dedicated to the development of TB products. The Pla Ravetllat serum and the hemo-antitoxin against tuberculosis were their most important products marketed in Europe and Latin America. The company lasted until the 1980s under the direction of his successor and daughter Doña Nuria Pla.
His interest for social aspects and politics led him to be a member of the Socialist Party, and to be elected Deputy by the Popular Front in 1936. This and the civil war caused the interruption of his professional career in Spain and led him to the Mexican exile where he co-founded the publishing house “Editions Minerva”, and remained in this country until 1948. He spent the last years of his life in his home-laboratory, today the headquarters of the Foundation that bears his name.