UP faculty and alumni reap NAST PHL awards at 41st Annual Scientific Meeting

| Written by Celeste Ann Castillo Llaneta

UPLB scientists Dr. Rex Victor O. Cruz and Dr. Juan M. Pulhin are the recent addition to the growing and elite pool of Academicians of the National Academy of Science and Technology (NAST). Photo from the UP Los Baños website, http://uplb.edu.ph/top-stories/uplb-scientists-researchers-reap-nast-honors/


Faculty, researchers and alumni of the University of the Philippines were recognized at the recent awarding ceremonies of the National Academy of Science and Technology, Philippines (NAST PHL) 41st Annual Scientific Meeting (ASM), held from July 10 to 11, 2019 at the EDSA Shangri-La Hotel in Ortigas.

During the presentation of NAST Awards held on the second day of the meeting, the following UP alumni were singled out:

Winner of the Outstanding Scientific Book Award was Ma. Florina Y. Orillos-Juanfor her book, Kasaysayan at Vulnerabilidad: Ang Lipunang Pilipino sa Harap ng Pananalanta ng Pesteng Balang.

Recipients of the Outstanding Scientific Paper awards were:

  • Khris June L. Callano, Visitacion C. Huelgas, and Merlyn R. Sedano-Mendiorofor “Cytogenetics of Solanumaethiopicum L., S. melongena L. and Their F1 Hybrids and the Mechanism of Hybrid Sterility and Breakdown”;
  • Roel R. Suralta, Ma. Ysabera T. Batungbakal, Justine Camille T. Bello, Lance M. Caparas, Vincent H. Lagunilla, Katreen Mae D. Lucas, Joeffrey U. Patungan, Angela Joyce O. Siping, Jayvee A. Cruz, Maria Corazon J. Cabral and Jonathan M. Niones for “An Enhanced Root System Developmental Responses to Drought by Inoculation of Rhizobacteria (Streptomyces mutabilis) Contributed to the Improvement of Growth in Rice”;
  • Gayvelline C. Calacal, Jazelyn M. Salvador, Minerva S. Sagum, Raquel D. Fortun, and Maria Corazon A. De Ungria for “Pathology and DNA Analysis of Exhumed Human Remains Three-years Post-mortem”; and,
  • Benjamin Vallejo Jr., together with Jennifer Conejar-Espedido and Leanna Manubag for “The Ecology of an Incipient Marine Biological Invasion: The Charru Mussel Mytellacharruana d’ Orbignyi, 1846 (Bivalvia: Mytilidae) in Manila Bay, Luzon, Philippines”.

The winner of the 2018 World Academy of Sciences (TWAS) Prize for Young Scientist in the Philippines is noted food scientist Dr. Alonzo A. Gabriel, who is a professor at the College of Home Economics.

The 2018 Magsaysay Future Engineers/Technologists Awardees are: UP Diliman’s Peter Nicholas Saquido Onglao in first place; UP Los Baños’s John Cristopher A. Danezin second place; and UP Diliman’s Renzes Anne Gaerelle M. Gualberto in third place.

The winners of the NAST Talent Search for Young Scientist were: a UPLB associate professor, Dr. Darwin B. Putungan,in first place; a UP Diliman Institute of Biology assistant professor, Dr. Lillian Jennifer V. Rodriguez,in second place; and UP Diliman Marine Science Institute’s Dr. Deo Florence L. Ondain third place.

Among those named Outstanding Young Scientists were: Dr. Patricia Ann A. Jaranilla-Sanchez of UPLB; Dr. Pia D. Bagamasbad of UP Diliman; Dr. Michael C. Velarde of UP Diliman; Dr. Raymond Francis R. Sarmiento and Dr. Nathaniel, Jr. S. Orillaza of UP Manila; Dr. Lilibeth A. Salvador-Reyes of UP Diliman; and, Dr. Rico C. Ancog of UPLB.

Members of the UP community also number among the newly elected NAST members, namely: former UPLB Chancellor Dr. Rex Victor O. Cruz; a founding director of the UP Diliman Institute of Civil Engineering, Engr. Benito M. Pacheco; Dr. Rody G. Sy of the UP Manila Department of Internal Medicine; and, former Dean of the UPLB College of Forestry and Natural Resources Dr. Juan M. Pulhin.

Filipino-American biologist, former journalist and Silver Professor of Biology at New York University, Dr. Michael D. Purugganan, and a nanotechnologist, a professor and an associate chair of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Maryland, Dr. Romel D.R. Gomez were newly elected Corresponding Members of the NAST.

The 41st Annual Scientific Meeting of the NAST focused on the Philippines’ efforts on the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on (Goal 4) quality education, (Goal 12) responsible consumption and production, and (Goal 14) life below water. At present, its president is Academician Rhodora V. Azanza.