Search for DOST-NRCP Dr. Eusebio Y. Garcia Award

The Department of Science and Technology’s National Research Council of the Philippines, the oldest collegial body in the country with 2,983 Filipino scientists as members announced the search for outstanding research on molecular biology and molecular pathology.

The award, called Dr. Eusebio Y. Garcia Award is open to all Filipino scientists (members or non-members of NRCP) who reside in the Philippines and conducted research on the said fields.  The criteria for the award include originality, potential application, scholarliness, and uniqueness. 

Entries or nominations should be submitted in five original copies to NRCP Executive Director Paciente A. Cordero Jr., committee chairperson at the council’s office in Gen. Santos Ave., Bicutan, Tagig City. 

The winner will receive a medallion of excellence and Php20 thousand cash at the awarding ceremonies to be held July 18, final day of National Science and Technology Week celebration at the Philippine Trade and Training Center, Roxas Boulevard Manila. 

Dr. Eusebio Y. Garcia was a world-renowned scientist.  He finished his Doctor of Medicine and Certificate in Public Hygiene in 1932 and 1933 at the University of the Philippines.  He became guest scientist at Tulane University School of Tropical Medicine in Louisiana, and research fellow of the Rockefeller Foundation Malaria Research Laboratory in Talahassee, Florida. 

He became an international scholar by election to international scholastic fraternity of Phi Kappa Phi, taught at UP College of Medicine and Manila Central University until he retired.  He published about 250 research works in both local and foreign scientific journals. 

One of his published works won “The First Asian Winner of the International A. Cressy Morrison Prize for Natural Science, the highest award of the New York Academy of Sciences in 1947.  Another paper won a gold medal and diploma of merit for an invention of “salva ara” in the first annual convention of Filipino inventors in 1965. 

In 1985, Dr. Garcia observed the dearth of local research on molecular biology and molecular pathology that is critical to the development of strategies in combating emerging diseases and bacteria.  He donated Php100 thousand as initial funds for the award program that NRCP later named after him. 

Past winners of the award include: 

Dr. Saturnina C. Halos, currently the Department of Agriculture’s biotechnology program manager who won in 1989 for pioneering work in molecular biology on cloning of cellulose genes, restriction mapping of plasmids, and the development of simplified method of examining gene products. 

 

 

Dr. Asuncion K. Raymundo, a National Academy of Science and Technology academician was the recipient in 1996 for outstanding research in molecular genetics and molecular biology, which include genetic engineering, development of herbicide resistant transgenic crops, detection and analysis of genetic polymorphism in Xanthomonas orysae pv. Oryzicola using REP-PCR, modification of non-radioactive method for membrane-base nucleic acid detection; and protoplast formation, regeneration and fusion in Bacillus polymexa, resulting in the development of a method used in genetic analysis and mapping of the biosynthetic genes of polymyxin. 

In 1998, St. Luke’s Medical Center Vice-President for Research and Development Dr. Filipinas F. Natividad won for her outstanding research on the molecular biology of various protozoans including ciliates and parasitic as well as opportunistic amoebae; dynamic leadership in establishing and managing the modern biomedical research facility at SLMC; and for establishing effective international linkages that resulted to expansion of research orientation and upgrading of molecular biology research in the country.  

 

Dr. Ameurfina D. Santos, professor at UP National Institute of Molecular Biology won in 2000 for developing efficacious antibodies for medical therapy and diagnosis, and for generation and characterization of single-gene-encoded single-chain-tetravalent anti-tumor antibody.  

 

 

Dr. Narceo Bajet, a plant pathologist now working in a foreign company won in 2001 for discovering the genome of the bean golden mosaic virus — the first discovered plant virus containing a single-stranded DNA; isolation and closing of sub-genome RNA of tungro spherical virus, and determination of the variability of rice tungro bacilli form virus.  The award also considered his continuous research on single-stranded DNA infecting Philippine crops that include banana bunchy-top and steak, and Gemini viruses of tomato and squash among others.   

In 2002, Dr. Gisela P. Concepcion, professor at UP Diliman Marine Science Institute won for outstanding and creative research work in the use of indigenous Quinone metabolites fron Xestospangia sp. and Zyzzya sp. sponges, correlating its tumor cytotoxicity and DNA topoisomerase II inhibitory activity; isolation and screening of potential anti-malarial marine natural products (Crambescidins), and antimicrobial metabolites of marine microorganisms associated with marine organism.  

 

Dr. Bernadette D.L. Libranda-Ramirez also won in 2003 for her significant contribution as research team leader that produced new knowledge and understanding of the molecular epidemiology of hepatitis G virus infection in the Philippines.  

 

 

Last year’s winner was Dr. Luz P. Acosta, head of the Department of Health’s Immunology Department for her pioneering work in the development of a sensitive immunoassay method for the diagnosis of schistosomiasis which would have tremendous impact on schistosomiasis control in the country.  She was also cited for her commitment to schistosomiasis research and to public health especially among Filipinos afflicted with schistosomiasis.

 

 

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