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Official Research, Development and Extension Newsletter of the University of the Philippines Los Baos
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Volume 4 Number 1 Nov 2011 - June 2012

Biofuels breakthrough: Commercial-scale fuel ethanol from sweet sorghum, a first in SE Asia

of DA-BAR, and has been resounding success due to our close partnerships with the academic and private sectors, said the bureau's Director, Nicomedes P. Eleazar. SCBI Chairman of the Board Jose Maria Zabaleta Jr. acknowledged this pioneer commercial research project with UPLB and Biomass Resources Inc, SCBIs private technology and service provider. We are very happy with this milestone as this has never before been tried nor done in the Philippines and even Southeast Asia. Meanwhile, UPLB and OPTIONMPC has recently agreed also to conduct more research on large-scale production of quality sweet sorghum syrup for bioethanol production. This milestone would not have been possible without the important help of Mariano Marcos State University, UPLB La Granja Research and Training Station, UPLB College of Agriculture - Crop Science Cluster, and the Office of the City Agriculturist of Sagay. Prof. Demafelis said that their roles in this collaborative project have paved the way in proving the technical viability of using sweet sorghum as feedstock for ethanol production. We hope that this breakthrough ushers in more research into biofuels, he added. (Florante A. Cruz and Sammy D. Aquino)
7 8 10 11 13 14 PH a "breakout" nation? ... UPLB convergence with NGAs ... Prof chair on tech com at UPLB ... Photo News ... Photo News ... Volume Photo News ... 4 Number 1 November 2011 - June 2012 15 16 17 18 19 20


ay 27, 2012 has marked a milestone in the annals of Philippine biofuels research and development when the first sweet sorghum-based bioethanol in the country was commercially produced in Negros Occidental. Prof. Rex B. Demafelis of UPLBs College of Engineering and Agroindustrial Technology-Department of Chemical Engineering (CEATChemEng) and leader of the universitys Alternative Energy RDE team that supervised the production, stated that this breakthrough should motivate more growers to plant sweet sorghum. We are very much excited and we expect that this will spur economic activity in Negros and in other provinces where sweet sorghum can also be planted. From nearly 480 tons of sweet sorghum stalks harvested from 30 hectares of plantation fields in Sagay City, the Organic Producers in the Island of

Negros Multi-Purpose Cooperative (OPTION-MPC) 500-TCD capacity sugar mill had produced 62 tons of quality sweet sorghum syrup at 6065 brix. The sweet sorghum syrup was subsequently processed by San Carlos Bioenergy Inc. (SCBI), pioneer ethanol producer in the Philippines, and successfully produced 15,231 liters of fuel-grade ethanol. The bagasse from the sweet sorghum was also utilized by OPTION-MPC for power production. Since 2006, UPLB and the Department of Agriculture - Bureau of Agricultural Research (DA-BAR) have led the search to showcase the potential of sweet sorghum as commercial feedstock for ethanol production. DABAR has funded and coordinated most of the different R and D projects on sweet sorghum in the country -- from initial production, adaptability testing, up to its commercialization. This has become another milestone in the research and development initiatives
1 2 3 4 5 6 VCCuevas: NAST-Greenwood award ... MVOEspaldon: The new VC for RE ... Plants that rock! ... Smallest orchid found in Peak 3 ... Dar presents challenges in agri ... IMSP faculty trains high schools ...

IN this ISSUE:

Biofuels breakthrough for bioethanol ... 7th orientation on RDPIM ... Workshop on writing technical articles ... 2012 Outstanding R&E Awardees ... 2012 BPI-DOST Science Awardees ... Foundation course of IP reps ...


OVCRE conducts 7th Orientation- Seminar on R&D Project Implementation and Management

hirty-two young researchers and selected faculty from various university units participated in the 7th OrientationSeminar on R&D Project Implementation and Management (RDPIM) sponsored by the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research and Extension (OVCRE) last April 16 to 17, 2012 at UPLB. A regular activity of the OVCRE during summer for faculty and researchers, the orientation-seminar orients and trains new researchers on the basics of project implementation and management, and also updates seasoned researchers on the rules and regulations to follow in conducting research and extension projects. Ms. Ruth M. Almario, OVCREs Section Coordinator for Project Development, Monitoring and Evaluation (PDMES), reported that six modules on project implementation and management were discussed by resource persons from various offices. The first three modules were on research proposal development and processing, project implementation and monitoring, financial management, procurement systems and bids and awards. The other topics were on intellectual property rights, publishing research results, and ethics in research. Resource persons included Prof. Nelson Jose Vincent I. Querijero of the Supply and Property Management Office (SPMO), Ms. Cristina Eusebio of the UPLB Bids and Awards Secretariat (BAC), Ms. Joan E. Mendoza, UPLB Chief Accountant, Mr. Elias Abao, Jr. of the UPLB Center for Technology Transfer and Entrepreneurship (CTTE), and Dr. Evelyn Mae T. Mendoza of the CA-Crop Science Cluster. The participants appreciated the opportunity to interact during the forum sessions with the resource persons in trying to address real and potential problems during the implementation of their respective projects. In closing the two-day orientationseminar, Vice-Chancellor for Research and Extension, Dr. Maria Victoria O. Espaldon, was both enthusiastic and hopeful that the participants were able to gain valuable information which will make easier the conduct of their research. "The current UPLB administration is keen on targeting a substantial increase in the number of research outputs projects and published scientific articlestargets that are being emphasized in our thrust toward a world-class research university," Dr. Espaldon added in an after-program interview. "That is why we are putting premium on keeping our faculty and researchers abreast of the guidelines and procedures, and as such, they would not be lost on what to do when certain issues get in the way in their research and extension activities," she explained. (Jill Danice T. Buenaobra and Florante A. Cruz)
JOAN E. MENDOZA (standing), UPLB's Chief Accountant, providing tips to the participants on preparing their documents for reimbursements, payments and other accounting procedures.


THE PARTICIPANTS AND ORGANIZING TEAM pose for posterity at the front of the OVCRE Annex Building before proceeding to the seminar's second module during the first day of activities.

University of the Philippines Los Baos Research, Development and Extension Digest


Seminar-writeshop in writing technical articles held for young faculty and researchers


VICE-CHANCELLOR ESPALDON, giving words of encouragement during the opening.

ighteen young faculty and researchers from various university units were recently favored a free seminar-writeshop conducted by the Office of the ViceChancellor for Research and Extension that was held on March 28 to 30, 2012 at the UPLB CTTE Conference Room. The writeshop procedure developed by a team led by Dr. Ofelia K. Bautista, an Adjunct Professor of UPLB and Dr. Teresita L. Rosario, Professor Emeritus, was a combination of lectures, presentations and technical critiquing. It was tailored to suit the writeshop objective of enabling each participant to come up with a publishable paper at the end of the three-day writeshop.
PARTICIPANTS typing away at their laptops and revising their manuscripts for publication.

The participants had lectures on the following topics: writing the introduction, preparing the materials and method, planning the results and discussion, preparing tables and graphs, interpreting data using telegraphic summaries, and writing the title, byline and abstract. (Florante A. Cruz)
DR. BAUTISTA (left) coaching a participant on writing and re-writing portions of her article. DR. ROSARIO (left) looking at the progress being made on a participant's technical paper.

PARTICIPANTS present portions of their outputs after the lectures and writeshops.

ASSISTANT TO THE VICE-CHANCELLOR AGUILAR awarding certificates of completion.

Volume 4 Number 1 November 2011 - June 2012


Pulhin, Afuang, Rebutar: 2012 Outstanding Researcher, Extensionist and Creative Artist Awardees


hree faculty members were honored during the 103rd UPLB Foundation Day Convocation and Awarding Ceremonies held last March 6, 2012 at the Makiling Botanic Gardens Pavilion in the Research, Extension, and Creative Artist Awards categories. The winners received a plaque and prize money of P50,000 each.

OUTSTANDING RESEARCHER: DR. JUAN M. PULHIN, Professor 8 CFNR-Department of Social Forestry and Forest Goverannce

Dr. Juan M. Pulhin, Professor and Dean of the College of Forestry and Natural Resources, was the Outstanding Researcher for his studies in climate change and adaptation, and for influencing changes in the policies governing the implementation of community-based forest management in the country. For her incomparable dedication, expertise and deep involvement in extension and community service, specially in wildlife biology and biodiversity conservation, Dr. Leticia E. Afuang, Assistant Professor at the College of Arts and Sciences-Institute of Biological Sciences, received the Outstanding Extensionist Award. Prof. Marife D. Rebutar, faculty member of the UP Rural High School, was the recipient of the Outstanding Artist Award. Her high level of commitment in training the UP Rural High School Glee Club resulted to the choirs winning one gold and two silver medals in the Grand Prix Pattaya 4th World Choir Festival. Chancellor Rex Victor O. Cruz, who led the program in recognizing UPLBs exemplary faculty, staff and office personnel, had this to say to the awardees during the ceremonies, quoting the legendary martial artist Bruce Lee, "There are no limits. There

OUTSTANDING EXTENSIONIST: DR. LETICIA E. AFUANG, Assistant Professor 7 CAS-Institute of Biological Sciences


are plateaus, but you must not stay there... A man must constantly exceed his level," Chancellor Cruz challenged. This years awardees did not only satisfy the criteria set by the university but were also able to exceed the expectations of their colleagues and clientele. Their contributions to institutional and rural development,

commitment, technical competence, creative and effective outputs, impact of performance, and recognition received from other individuals or organizations haved paved the way in their becoming outstanding personnel of the year. (Jill Danice T. Buenaobra and Florante A. Cruz)

University of the Philippines Los Baos Research, Development and Extension Digest


UPLB honors BPI -DOST student awardees for outstanding achievements in science
n simple yet meaningful ceremonies last March 7, 2012, at the Makiling Botanic Gardens Pavilion, three UPLB students were put in high academic esteem by the university for outstanding achievement in science. They were awarded by the Bank of Philippine Islands and Department of Science and Technology with the BPIDOST Science Awards. With their parents, advisers, and close friends, awardees Chiliast B. Juan, BS Electrical Engineering; Luis Felipe D. Lopez, BS Chemical Engineering; and Cristina C. Uclaray, BS Agricultural Chemistry each received a plaque, and a prize money deposited in a BPI account.


CHANCELLOR REX VICTOR O. CRUZ, is proud of the university's commitment and support to the BPI-DOST Awards Program and congratulates the honorees.

From a field of thirty, Chiliast B. Juan landed in the top six and eventually received the First Runner-up Award for Best Project of the Year. During the program, the awardees presented their researches and were recognized as members of the elite group of winners of the BPI-DOST Science Awards. The annual BPI-DOST Science Awards recognizes and gives incentives to outstanding students from all over the Philippines who excel in mathematics, physics, engineering, chemistry, biology and computer science. With this year's three awardees, the university has now 70 students listed in the prestigious roster of recipients of the BPI-DOST Science Awards since 1989. (Florante A. Cruz)

RAUL D. DIMAYUGA, BPI Senior VP, reminds the awardees "that science is a service-oriented field, and hence, should be used to make life better for the Filipino."

LUIS FELIPE D. LOPEZ presents his research on optimizing steam explosion parameters for the pretreatment of sweet sorghum bagasse for bioethanol production.

CRISTINA C. UCLARAY present her study on encapsulating the bioactive phytochemicals caffeic acid and d-Limonene using rice bran phospholipids.

CHILIAST B. JUAN, 1st runner-up for Best Project of the Year, presents his analysis of the effects of various factors on voltage drop of a single-wire earth return distribution system.
Volume 4 Number 1 November 2011 - June 2012


UPLB Intellectual Property Office conducts Foundation Course for unit IP representatives


he UPLB Center for Technology Transfer (CTTE), in cooperation with the Intelletual Property Philippines (IPOPHL) held last May 2 to 3, 2012, a Foundation Course on Intellectual Property at the UPLB CTTE Building. Twenty-two UPLB staff designated as IP representatives of their colleges and research institutes, as well as the four staff of the UPLB CTTE attended the course. There were 24 faculty and researchers from other institutions all over the country- Bicol University, Mindanao State University-Iligan Institute of Technology, Samar State University, Central Luzon State University, PhilRice Muoz, and the Technology Resource Center-who also participated in the two-day course. The resource persons from the Makatibased IPOPHL included Engr. Rey Abraham B. Negre, IP Policy Analyst; Dancel Arcel P. Hernandez, IPR Specialist I of the IPOPHL's Documentation, Information, and Technology Transfer Bureau (DITTB); Atty. Jesus Antonio Ros, IPSO Area Manager for Central Luzon; Atty.

Louie Andrew Calvario, consultant in copyright support services; and Engr. Virginia F. Aumentado, IPOPHLDITTB IPR Specialist V. The course offered the participants an overview on the intellectual property system. Participants also underwent workshops designed to answer questions on topics such as trademarks, copyrights and patents. The importance of patent information was also discussed and a demonstration on how to conduct a patent search was done. An IP case study was also presented and made the topic of the workshop, enabling the participants to practice searches for patent information using online databases and patent search engines. The Foundation Course for the IP representatives is one of the courses required by the IPOPHL from UPLB when it recently put up an Innovation and Technology Support Office (ITSO), a unit that operates under the supervision of the Intellectual Property Office. The IP representatives will also undergo two more trainings, which will also be conducted by representatives from IPOPHL, on patent information from May 29 to 31, and more

IP POLICY ANAYST Engr. Rey Abraham B. Negre discusses the schedule of payments for protection of intellectual properties such as patents, trademarks and utility models.

ATTY. JESUS ANTONIO ROS, IPSO Area Manager, answers several questions raised by training participants on issues on copyright.

importantly, patent drafting from June 4 to 8, 2012 (Florante A. Cruz)

University of the Philippines Los Baos Research, Development and Extension Digest

PHOTO: courtesy of VCCUEVAS

AWARDEE DR. CUEVAS receives the plaque from DOST Undersecretary for Research and Development Fortunato T. de la Pea, Jr.

DR. VIRGINIA C. CUEVAS conferred the 2012 NAST Hugh Greenwood Environmental Science Award
r. Virginia C. Cuevas, Professor at the College of Arts and SciencesInstitute of Biological Sciences and UP Scientist I was recently awarded by the Department of Science and Technology-National Academy of Science and Technology (DOSTNAST) the prestigious 2012 Hugh Greenwood Environmental Science Award in simple rites last April 23, 2012 at the Hyatt Hotel and Casino in Ermita, Manila. The DOST-NAST cited her significant contributions in the development of technologies leading to agricultural sustainability which contributed to environmental conservation and protection. With her prestigious award was a prize money of US$ 1,000.

Dr. Cuevas' composting technology using the bacteria Trichoderma harzianum Rifai Activator has not only contributed to increased productivity but has greatly benefited the environment. Dr. Cuevas' technology- Trichoderma microbial inoculant- can be used as biofertilizer for vegetables and other upland crops; as biological control agent; as crop promoter; and as activator for composting. Trichoderma microbial inoculant as a biocontrol agent and growth promoter has been hailed as an important solution to the clubroot disease which has been ravaging the multi-million crucifer industry in several areas in Benguet.

Compost processed using the inoculant proved to be effective in decontaminating soil with toxic levels of copper. At present, Dr. Cuevas has a research that uses the compost to rehabilitate agricultural lands damaged by mine tailings in Mankayan, Benguet and Cervantes, Ilocos Sur. Her technology has also been used to produce compost materials which significantly improved the growth performance of Jatropha curcas in acidic, low-fertility, unproductive grassland soil. The Hugh Greenwood award is given annually given by the DOST-NAST to honor researchers with outstanding scientific and technological researches which protect and conserve the environment. (Florante A. Cruz)
Volume 4 Number 1 November 2011 - June 2012


PHOTO: courtesy of SESAM

MVO Espaldon: the new Vice Chancellor for Research and Extension

r. Maria Victoria O. Espaldon, Professor of geography and environmental science, is the new Vice Chancellor of the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research and Extension (OVCRE) effective November 1, 2011. Dr. Espaldon succeeds Dr. Enrico P. Supangco whose appointment as Vice Chancellor ended last October 31, 2011. The new Vice Chancellor for R & E obtained her PhD in Geography, major in rural resource assessment and environmental analysis from the University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada in June 1995. She finished her PhD dissertation on "Human-Ecological Processes in the Deforestation of Tropical Uplands in the Philippines" under the UPLBCanadian International Development Agency Fellowship Program. She

obtained her masteral degree in Forestry major in Social Forestry from UPLB in 1991, and her BS in biology in 1983, also from the university. Her research interests include rural resource assessment and environmental analysis, sustainable agriculture and natural resource use, program planning and development, participatory approaches to natural resources management, environmental security and health, climate change adaptation of agricultural systems and communities. She may appear 'tiny,' looking at her petite body built, but Dr. Espaldon is 'bigger than life' so to speak when her professional stature is concerned. What she lacks in height, she has overshadowed with what she has accomplished. For her scientific research and productivity, Dr. Espaldon has been

conferred the rank of UP Scientist I for 2011-2012, in a UP Scientific Productivity Awarding Ceremony held on October 28, 2011 at the Bahay ng Alumni, UP Diliman, Quezon City. This award is given to scientists who have been continuously providing firstrate contributions towards national progress through their discoveries and inventions published in reputable journals here and abroad. Dr. Espaldon held the UPLB Centennial Professorial Chair for her paper entitled "Towards a Transdisciplinary Research Culture in the University" and presented in 2010 at UPLB, and the SEARCA Professorial Chair for geography for her paper entitled "Conflict Resolution in Water Resources Management in the Philippines: A Political Ecology Perspective" in 2003. She was a visiting scientist from October to November in 2005 in the Department of Geography, European Institute for Marine Ecosystem Studies, University of Brest, France as DUOFrance Faculty Exchange Program grantee; and in the Department of Soils and Geology, Wageningen Agricultural University working on Modelling Land Use Change the use of Conversion and Land Use Effects (CLUE) from December 1 to 13, 1999.

University of the Philippines Los Baos Research, Development and Extension Digest


PHOTO:S courtesy of SESAM

INTERNATIONAL LINKAGES is one of Dr. Espaldon's forte, making possible activities such as the Training Course on Crop-LivestockEnvironment Interactions organized by SESAM, CA-ADSC and the Wagenigen University of Netherlands.

ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION, specially for the younger generation is close to Dr. Espaldon's heart, having initiated several educational activities for communities in disaster-prone areas.

Dr. Espaldon was awarded the Gawad Lagablab in 2008 by the Philippine Science High School in Diliman, Quezon City, for being an Outstanding Philippine Science High School Alumnae for the Academe (Environmental Science). She also received the Zayed International Award for the Environment in 2007, a recognition given to international scientists of the Millenium Ecosystem Assessment Program of the United Nations. Three of her most important publications were published abroad. Last 2011, she co-wrote "Reducing Vulnerability in Rural Communities in the Philippines: Modelling Social Links between Science and Policy" which appeared in the book "Integrating Science and Policy, Vulnerability and Resilience in Global

Environmental Change" published in London UK and Washington DC, USA. In 2010, her Handbook on Catchment Management entitled "A Tropical Lake Under Pressure" was published by Wiley Blackwell, Oxford Press, London. She also co-authored "Vulnerability to Climate Variability and Change in the Uplands," a chapter of the book "Critical States: Environmental Challenges to Development in Monsoon Southeast Asia" which was published in Malaysia in 2008. She has a hectic professional life. Not only active working in the country, she has worked as well in countries like Vietnam, The Netherlands, Thailand, Myanmar, Indonesia, Canada, Bhutan and Laos. As a faculty administrator, Dr. Espaldon served as the Dean of the

School of Environmental Science and Management (SESAM) from May 2006 until 2011. Loida E. Pangan, who served as her secretary in SESAM, has this to say: Dr. Espaldon has been a good boss, okay siya ka-trabaho. She is determined but compassionate. She dearly loves her staff, always showing concern for them. She really thrives on taking multiple tasks: an administrator, a hardworking researcher and extensionist, a teacher who fulfills the true meaning of teaching, a wife and a mother of two, and a grandmom, all at the same time. Dr. Espaldon, fondly called "Vicky" by friends and associates, is married to Celso F. Espaldon. They are blessed with two children, Maria Laya and Limbay Lahi, and a handsome grandchild, Lean.
DR. ESPALDON leads students of SESAM during the 2010 UPLB Loyalty Day parade. During her term as School Dean, SESAM was recognized by CHED as a Center for Development.

DR. ESPALDON with other editors of the Journal of Environmental Science and Management, SESAM's publication that has been included in Thomson Reuters' ISI Journal Masterlist.

Volume 4 Number 1 November 2011 - June 2012



DICHAPETAL SP. growing in Barangay Ransang, Rizal, Palawan Province.

PHYLLANTHUS BALGOOYI found in Barangay Sta. Cruz, Puerto Princesa, Palawan

VAVACEA SP. shot in Mt. Hamiguitan, Davao Oriental, Mindanao


Some plants do love heavy metal
Since some plants have the unique capability of taking-up heavy metals from the soil and accumulating these into their biomass, e.g. shoots; they can be used to remediate or clean-up contamination in soil and water through a process called phytoextraction. Plants that extract heavy metals There are several plant species that are known to have the unique ability to accumulate soil and water contaminants in their biomass. One of these species is what botanists call metallophytes. These plants have the ability to tolerate metal toxicity and survive and reproduce on soils that contain unusually high concentration of trace elements, such as nickel, chromium, cobalt, magnesium and manganese. Some of these metallophytes even actually need these heavy metals present in the soil to survive. Of particular interest to researchers are those metallophytes which hyperaccumulate metals, or extract and store soil contaminants at very high ith several man-made and ecological disasters recently happening worldwide, conserving the environment and protecting it from further degradation has become one of the biggest concerns of both the academic and scientific community. A mineral-rich country with vast ore deposits such as the Philippines has great economic potential, but has an equally great risk of damaging its own environment caused by the pollution from its industries. So when it comes to solutions which could address problems caused by environmental pollution, we cannot help but look forward to innovative technologies and knowledge that are largely "green," so to speak. Researchers are now interested in finding ways to eliminate or at least minimize the harm inflicted on the environment. One of these special interests is on phytotechnology, the application of science and engineering in studying environmental problems and providing solutions to these problems through the use of plants.


levels, since these can be potential bioremediators. Hyper-accumulating plants can contain over 1,000 g/g dry weight of nickel, cadmium, copper, chromium or lead. They can also have over than 10,000 g/g dry weight of zinc and manganese. According to the Global Metallophyte Database (, 45 plant families have species identified as hyperaccumulators. For nickel, there are 330 species; zinc, 12); manganese, 10; cobalt, 30; copper, 32; selenium, 20; lead, 14; arsenic, 5; and cadmium, 2. A lot of theories have been forwarded by researchers why some plants hyperaccumulate metals. According to Dr. Edwino S. Fernando, Professor 12 and UP Scientist I at the College of Forestry and Natural Resources-Department of Forest Biological Sciences, hyperaccumulation can be a means of metal tolerance and disposal for the plants. "It could also be a form of osmotic resistance to drought or elemental allelopathy. Plants can also be


University of the Philippines Los Baos Research, Development and Extension Digest


hyperaccumulating as a form of defense from herbivores or pathogens. It could also be purely accidental." Philippine metallophytes Although considerable research on metallophytes is already ongoing all over the world, in the Philippines, however, much is still to be learned about them. In his professorial lecture held last April 24, Dr. Fernando cited various plant species which are already discovered to be metallophytes. Among these species were Brackenridgea, Dichapetalum, Walsura and Xylosma. Hypernickelophore species, or those which hyperaccumulate nickel, have

also been discovered in different areas in the Philippines. Some of these are Dichapetalumgeloniodes ssp. pilosum, Dichapetalumgeloniodes ssp. tuberculatum, Phyllanthus balgooyi, Rinorea sp. and Vavaea sp. Dr. Fernando also found that although metallophyte hotspots in Zambales, Palawan, Davao Oriental, Isabela, Samar and Surigao Del Norte have already been discovered, more areas are yet to be explored. Sadly, these species are already under grave threat. "The major reasons why they face severe threats of extinction are active mining, agriculture, changing land-use and site remediation," he added.

Need to conserve these special plants Metallophytes have interesting potentials in rehabilitating contaminated lands and revegetation of marginal areas. Other potential uses of metallophytes also include as stabilizer to lessen leaching of substances from the soil, as a phytominer which can selectively concentrate specific metals for subsequent harvest and use, and a lot of other possibilities. Dr. Fernando is seeking more attention for research, conservation and development efforts for these species. "Research is very much needed not only to discover more about their uses, but also to protect them," he said.


A century ago today, smallest orchid rediscovered in Mt. Makiling

Many other floral and faunal species were observed in biodiversity expedition to Mt. Makilings not-so-visited Peak 3
fter bucking long, almost vertical climbs, heavy loads, and enduring a five-day expedition from May 28 to June 1 to Mt. Makiling's Peak 3 without taking a bath, researchers from the College of Forestry and Natural Resources were elated to show their preliminary report on the biodiversity of the mountains highest peak last June 26, 2012 at the Nicolas Lansigan

Thrixspermum robinsonii Ames, measuring about 8 cm from tip to root may not be the smallest in the world, but definitely the smallest in Mt. Makiling's Peak 3.

Auditorium, College of Forestry and Natural Resources (CFNR). "It was difficult, but at the same time exciting. We cant wait to return," beamed Dr. Manuel L. Castillo, faculty of the Department of Forest Biological Sciences (CFNR-FBS) and leader of the terrestrial flora assessment of the expedition sponsored by power company First Gen Corporation.

Composed of 16 durable foresters, forest technicians from the Makiling Center for Mountain Ecosystems (MCME), CFNR researchers and guides, the expedition team travelled for five days, spending three days for collection, observation and documentation activities in Peak 3. The peak is located at the Greater Sipit Watershed, the crab-claw-shaped portion of Mt. Makiling's caldera.
Volume 4 Number 1 November 2011 - June 2012


"Peak 3 of Mt. Makiling is a mossy forest, and true to description of the American Explorer Dr. H. N. Whitford, the area is covered with clouds and thus very moist; the winds are strong such that trees are dwarfed, crooked and leaned in the winds direction," Dr. Castillo explained. "Mossy forests sit at 1,000 above sea level elevation, and when you look at the tree canopies from afar, they almost look like broccoli heads, he further described. "At Peak 3, we saw exquisite flora found only in mossy forests, among them are various endemic begonias, endangered medenillas, crawling and climbing pandans, ferns, of course, fungi and mosses," Castillo enumerated. The greatest find the group had was an eight-centimeter orchid Thrixspermum robinsonii Ames, a species originally collected by American botanist Elmer Merill in 1912. "Finding this orchid in our beloved Makiling, after more than a hundred years, is proof of the university's success in conserving the Makiling Forest Reserve," Dr. Castillo proudly said. During the second half of the report, Prof. Juancho B. Balatibat, also of CFNR-FBS recounted his observations of various fauna he encountered during

THE 16, at the foot of the Peak 3 just before their assault through the Haring Bato trail during the second day of expedition. Dr. Nathaniel C. Bantayan, MCME Director, took the photograph.

the trek. By using rapid biodiversity assessment and opportunistic sampling, Balatibat recorded 13 bird species, 2 mammal species, 5 frog species, 80 insect species and a reptile. "Our observations verified the high endemism of fauna which have been previously seen by other researchers," he explained. According also to Prof. Balatibat, he observed the presence of endemic and endagered species such as the Luzon blind snake, Rana woodworthi frog, Philippine eagle-owl, and Luzon wild pig. Prof. Balatibat also found specimens that may be possibly new to science -- a long-horned grasshopper with spines in its back, a leaf-like katytid, and a still unidentified stick insect.

The Makiling Center for Mountain Ecosystems's Director, Dr. Nathaniel C. Bantayan, also a member of the expedition team, urged everyone to refrain from collecting flora and fauna in Mt. Makiling. "Aside from the trail being very dangerous and not advisable for amateur mountaineers, there is a law against bioprospecting (EO 247) which prohibits and penalizes the collection of biological and genetic resources from Mt. Makiling, in particular and any part of the country, in general." the official said. "Well, chances are, the plants will not survive and die anyway once they are taken out of their natural habitat, so it is really better not to try anyway," Dr. Bantayan advised. (Florante A. Cruz)

"A WONDERFUL SIGHT", according to the biodiversity expedition team, is the landscape of tree canopies covering the side of Mt. Makiling going to Peak 3.


University of the Philippines Los Baos Research, Development and Extension Digest



DR. WILLIAM D. DAR, ICRISAT Director-General, discusses the Inclusive Market-Oriented Development Framework, a strategy that ICRISAT religiously follows in all its programs, and serves as the "pathway to better link farmers to the markets, increase their income and end poverty."

ICRISAT DG William Dar presents challenges for agriculture in dryland and rainfed areas
unger is now a serious problem in some parts of the world. The World Food Programme estimates that one out of seven people in the world is hungry and/or malnourished. Making the supply of food sufficient for everyone in the future is arguably one of the major concerns of agriculture experts. Along side with poverty, global food security has become one of the pressing issues confronted by all. Are we food secure? Dr. William G. Dar, Director-General of the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) actually believes that enough food is produced every year to provide every human with the right nutrition to sustain him throughout the day. However, "the problem is that the food is not shared equally by everybody." During his talk on "Challenges and Opportunities in the Dryland/ Rainfed Areas" last March 4, 2012 at the

Agricultural Systems Cluster Lecture Hall, Dr. Dar shared that the amount of the yearly produce must be increased by 75 to 100 percent before 2050 in order to close the hunger gap and to achieve global food security. To do this, Dr. Dar says that all possibilities and resources should be explored and utilized. "We should have sustainable and eco-friendly ways of providing enough food for everybody. Planting crops on dry lands, which seemed impossible before, is a potential solution," Dr. Dar pointed out. Asked to cite what challenges and opportunities are there in terms of research and development in dryland/ rainfed areas, Dr. Dar suggested that the university should establish and organize a center for climate-resilient agriculture. "Here, people should consolidate and analyze various climatic and crop-production models," he added. "The next challenge is to follow and deliver a farmer-centric, science and

"By the year 2050, there will be a 75% increase in food demand. Sustained population growth, aggressive economic competition and increased food consumption will result in intensive exploitation and pressure on resources." - Dar
market-based development approach which can help smallholder farmers improve their productivity, income, and ultimately, their well-being," Dr. Dar also said that UPLB should be able to broaden technology options and farmers access to knowledge and scientific research. "Of course, we should not also forget, we must help farmers link up with markets," he furthered. The director-general insisted that in improving agriculture, there should be no shortcuts. "There is a series of steps to follow and the first to take is to put farming in sustainable land management systems. (Jill Danice T. Buenaobra and Florante A. Cruz)
Volume 4 Number 1 November 2011 - June 2012



IMSP faculty trains high school students and teachers in math and physics education, robotics, astronomy


tudents and teachers from several high schools in Laguna recently enriched their knowledge in math, physics and robotics with the help of the UPLB faculty from the Institute of Mathematical Sciences and Physics (IMSP) of the College of Arts and Sciences. With partners such as the Department of Education and the Australian Government Overseas Aid Program, IMSP conducted several training programs aimed to promote science and technology to young students and their mentors. IMSP's Mathematics Division conducted a seminar-workshop on "Interactive Teaching and Learning of Mathematics for High School Teachers" last April 23 to 24, 2012. The seminar-workshop included talks and hands-on activities done by experts in mathematics educationProf. Alleli Ester C. Domingo, who shared her knowledge on interactive and fun teaching of mathematics; Dr. Erlina R. Ronda of UP NISMED, who introduced Geogebra, a freeware designed to aid teachers in the teaching of several geometric concepts. The second part of the workshop was conducted by Prof. Lynie B. Dimasuay last May 10, 2012 where she taught teachers how to create interactive learning materials through the web. Not to be edged by its sister division, the Physics Division facilitated a "Research and Strategy Workshop for High School Physics Teachers" last April 11 to 13. The workshop

PARTICIPANTS OF THE ROBOTICS WORKSHOP on April 23 and 24 test their three-wheeled robots which they have built and programmed to run following an elliptical track drawn on a flat surface.

focused on actual experiments and oral and written presentation of results. Low cost set-up of technology-based instruction was also tackled. The Division also offered a series of Training Workshops in Robotics for High School Teachers and Students. The trainings were conducted by Prof. Nelio C. Altoveros, Mr. Julius Cris V. Salinas, and Mr. Mark Lester L. Altoveros of the Computer Hardware and Instrumentation Physics Laboratory. The first installment was held on March 30, 2012 at the UP Rural High School for their juniorlevel students, followed by another set last April 23 to 24, with students from other high schools as participants. The Physics Division's Astrophysics Research Laboratory, in collaboration

with the International Astronomical Union, offered the country's first ever Galileo Teacher Training Program last April 911, 2012 with 20 participants and Dr. Rogel Mari D. Sese at the helm. Participants were treated to interesting lectures ranging from the history of human space flight to different astronomy activities that they may employ in their classes. They also participated in hands-on activities such as setting-up and using a telescope. The most thrilling part of the training is the water rocketmaking and launching activity, where participants competed with each other for "rocket supremacy." The activity is part of Institute's pivotal role in the Philippine Space Science Education Program. (from Sipnayan, [1]:2-3)


University of the Philippines Los Baos Research, Development and Extension Digest


Is the Philippines poised to be a break-out nation?


and there have been more applications of foreign firms to do business here; while remittances of our OFWs are increasing, and propels more domestic demand by consuming families."
DR. CIELITO F. HABITO, raised and schooled in UP Los Baos, tells of the renewed vigor of manufacturing in the Philippines because of more interesting and lucrative opportunities and benefits.

ormer socio-economic planning secretary, now Ateneo professor Dr. Cielito F. Habito answered this question in a recently held seminar on June 22, 2012 at the College of Economics and Management ICOPED Auditorium. The seminar was held by the Department of Economics in honor of former economics professors and deans Dr. Liborio S. Cabanilla and Dr. Tirso B. Paris, Jr. In April 2012, Morgan Stanley emerging markets division head Ruchir Sharma created quite a stir when he named in his book the Philippines as one of the "breakout nations" upcoming new stars in the international economy. Since then, several news and articles have pointed to the country as one of the economies to watch in the next years. Habito, surmised however, "It really remains to be seen." Explaining why finance experts look at the Philippines as one of next "breakout nations" that include also Turkey and Indonesia, Habito gave trends showing that the Philippine economy has greatly improved since 2010, and is still surging. "Forty years ago, the Philippines was just like Thailand, the two were

almost twins in terms of economy," Habito recounted. Back then, the two countries had the same gross domestic investment. "Since then, Thailands industry doubled, while the Philippine transformed into a service economy," he added. Today, the average income of a Thai is twice than that of a Filipino because of its consistently greater domestic investments. The Philippines has now replaced Indonesia as the ASEANs laggard. The average growth rate of our gross domestic product (GDP) formation from 2004-2009 was at 0%. "But in 2010, the country had a very high private domestic investment portfolio, at 31.6%. It was really zooming." Habito explained. In 2011, statistics showed that the peso and prices were stable, employment increased, and key manufacturing industries greatly improved in performance. Also, the quality of economic growth has improved, the job-rich industries did better, and construction of infrastructure was in high gear. Dr. Habito also elaborated that "business confidence has really peaked, signifying that doing business in the country is very optimistic." He added that "private investment is very high

But will the confidence and growth last? The economics expert has this to say: "Even if our outlook shows that 2012 might be the beginning of a long awaited economic breakout, we have so much to watch out for." These, according to Habito are the industries in manufacturing, infrastructure, agriculture and agrbusiness, tourism, business process outsourcing, mining and others. And even if the country has proved resilient to the global economic slowdown, Habito underscored that a breakout would be possible if "government spending goes full throttle, governance improves, credit ratings upgrades, Mindanao becomes the new growth pole, and the China economy continues to wane, while Japan and Thailand recover from the disasters that disrupted their economies." So that every Filipino can contribute to a better economy, the speaker enjoined everyone to "pay their taxes, buy Filipino-buy locally, discover the Philippines first, and invest-- in Mindanao, good political leaders, and in a poor family." But what is most important to a breakout nation, Habito reminded, is the "quality of political leaders" we have. "Demand good governance, specially that we have upcoming elections in 2013 and 2016," he ended. (Florante A. Cruz)
Volume 4 Number 1 November 2011 - June 2012




UPLB joins multi-agency convergence initiative to match technologies to government needs

early 60 people from ten organizations, led by their designated officials, trooped to the headquarters of the UPLB Center for Technology Transfer and Entrepreneurship (CTTE) at the Science and Technology Park last July 27, 2012 to participate in what was billed as an unprecedented activity among government agencies and the university -the UPLB-National Convergence Initiative (NCI) Roundtable Discussion. The National Convergence Initiative, created in 1999 by the joint efforts of the Secretaries of the Departments of Agriculture (DA), Agrarian Reform (DAR), and the Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), aims to develop and operationalize a common framework for sustainable rural development that will facilitate the convergence of the resources of the three agencies to maximize the impact on countryside development. In 2010, an enhanced NCI was started

to be pursued, concentrating on four major components, namely, policy and advocacy; agro-enterprise cluster and agribusiness development; capacity building and knowledge management. DENR was represented by its Assistant Secretary, Mr. Alex M. Lauricio while DAR was represented by DAR Operations Director Gomer G. Tumbali. Those present for the DA included Director Jenny E. Remoquillo (DA-HVCDP), Director Manuel R. Jarmin (DA-LDC), Dr. Normita Pasalo (DA-Philmec) Ms. Rosemari Gumera (SRA), Ms. Joel Lales (DA-BAR) and Mr. Marriz B. Agbon (DA-PADCC). The UPLB group was led by ViceChancellor for Research and Extension Dr. Maria Victoria O. Espaldon, CA Dean Dr. Domingo E. Angeles, CEAT Dean Dr. Arnold R. Elepao, and CFNR Dean Dr. Juan M. Pulhin, and Prof. Rex B. Demafelis, convenor of the UPLB Alternative Energy RDE and UPLB Energy Systems Committee.

During the round-table discussion, members of the NCI group presented their current thrusts and directions, as well as their needs to successfully implement their programs. On the other hand, UPLB officials presented their units' mature technologies, current projects and available expertise. UPLB presentors also suggested some areas where the university can provide the NCI's research needs. At the end of the forum, Mr. Marriz G. Agbon, who also chaired the NCI while serving as DA-PADCC President, shared that UPLB's capabilities can surely help the NCI programs, specially by way of technological interventions. Vice-Chancellor Espaldon said that a technical working group will be most likely created between the NCI and UPLB, and convergence areas will be identified to which full proposals may be submitted to and pursued by both parties. (Florante A. Cruz)


University of the Philippines Los Baos Research, Development and Extension Digest


On an accelerated technology commercialization program in UP Los Baos






Four UPLB faculty namely, Prof. Normito R. Zapata, Jr. and Dr. Dinah Pura T. Depositario of the College of Economics and Management's Department of Agribusiness Management (CEM-DAM); Prof. Dennis Marvin O. Santiago, College of Agriculture-Food Science Cluster (CA-FSC), and Dr. Enrico P. Supangco (CA-Animal and Dairy Science Cluster) presented last January 30, 2012 their respective UPLB Centennial Chair Lectures. For this issue, Dr. Depositario provides the UPLB RDE Digest a gist of the lecturers' findings and opinions on how to accelerate technology commercialization in UPLB. ZAPATA: Global and Local Trends and Experiences in Technology Commercialization After a review of the technology commercialization curricula of selected academic institutions around the world, Zapata concludes that a business incubator seems to be a common feature of the entrepreneurship programs among universities. The presence of a Technology Transfer Office in an academic institution is also an impetus for technology commercialization. DEPOSITARIO: Integrating Technopreneurship in UPLB Academic Programs: Towards Cultivating an Entrepreneurial Mindset Describing the academic programs promoting technopreneurship in various UPLB units, Depositario finds that the units spearheading academic initiatives aimed at developing an entrepreneurial culture among students are CEM (through DAM), CA and the UPLB Graduate School. Strategies recommended to enhance the effectiveness of entrepreneurshiprelated academic programs in UPLB include the institutionalization of a technopreneurship course (to be coordinated by DAM-CEM and to be participated in by technical academic units) as well as the partnering of UPLB-CTTE and CEM in initiating and coordinating various forms of entrepreneurship development activities for students, faculty, administrators, REPS and staff. SANTIAGO: Experiences and Insights on Technology Commercialization in UPLB Having looked into the technology commercialization experiences of different units of UPLB and the past and current businesses housed in the UPLB Science and Technology Park, Santiago stresses that technology developers should be educated on technology commercialization (either by licensing, creation of spin-off company or sale of IP or IPRs) and should be made well- versed in these modes. He recommends that a strong partnership between the university and the industry should be established to determine the technological needs of the industry that could be translated to opportunities for technology development and commercialization for UPLB. SUPANGCO: The UPLB Center for Technology Transfer and Entrepreneurship (CTTE): Addressing the Universitys Technology Commercialization Thrust After discussing different Philippine laws governing intellectual property, as well as the intellectual property guidelines of the University of the Philippines System and that of UPLB; the CTTE and the UPLB Technology Business Incubator Project and their role in IP and technology transfer in the university setting, Dr. Supangco recommends the following: the establishment of a technology assessment protocol, the creation of the Virtual Intellectual Property Office and its advisory board, the institutionalization of IP policies at the university level to ensure protection, and the establishment of the policy on sharing of royalty.
Volume 4 Number 1 November 2011 - June 2012



CHANGING OF THE GUARDS. Outgoing Vice-Chancellor for Research and Extension Dr. Enrico P. Supangco discusses the accomplishments and directions of the OVCRE to Dr. Maria Victoria O. Espaldon, incoming Vice-Chancellor in a simple program held last October 20, 2011 in welcoming the new administrators.

RECOGNITION. Ms. Ruth M. Almario, presents in behalf of the OVCRE, a plaque of recognition to outgoing Vice-Chancellor Dr. Enrico P. Supangco, for his six years of service to OVCRE, held during the 93rd UPLB Alumni Homecoming and Loyalty Day last October 10, 2011.

PUBLIC-PRIVATE PARTNERSHIPS. Atty. Joey Ochave, Senior Vice President for Social Partnerships of United Laboratories, Inc. presents possible modes of public-private opportunities between UPLB and Unilab during a special seminar held at BIOTECH last January 19, 2012.

IP TRAINING. Elias B. Abao, Jr. of the UPLB Intellectual Property Office discusses the revised UP IP guidelines during the UPLB CTTE's Seminar on Intellectual Property and Technology Commercialization last December 5, 2011 for IP representatives of the various research units at UPLB.

PROFESSORIAL CHAIR LECTURES. (L-R) Dr. Dinah Purah T. Depositario (CEM-ABM), Dr. Enrico P. Supangco (CA-ADSC), Prof. Normito R. Zapata, Jr. (CEMABM) and Prof. Dennis Marvin O. Santiago (CA-FSC) with National Scientist Ricardo M. Lantican (at the center) are grantees of the UPLB Centennial Professorial Lectures on "Strengthening Academic Programs and the Center for Technology Transfer and Entrepreneurship (CTTE): Towards an Accelerated Technology Commercialization Program" which were delivered at the CEM Lecture Hall last January 30, 2012.


University of the Philippines Los Baos Research, Development and Extension Digest


DA-BAR VISIT. Vice-Chancellor Maria Victoria O. Espaldon discusses with Chancellor Rex Victor O. Cruz and Director Nicomedes P. Eleazar (rightmost) of the Department of Agriculture-Bureau of Agricultural Research, the various RDE programs being implemented by the university during the director's visit to UPLB last February 1, 2012.

GEOHAZARDS IN MT. MAKILING. Senior Geologist Patricia A. Vergel de Dios-Kennedy of the DENR-Mines and Geosciences Bureau IV-A stresses the importance of geohazard maps for preparing LGUs around the Mt. Makiling watershed against possible disasters during the UPLB IdPCC's Seminar Series last January 31, 2012.

DA-BAR VISIT. Vice-Chancellor Maria Victoria O. Espaldon, DA-BAR Director Nicomedes P. Eleazar and some university staff en route to the CA-Agricultural Systems Cluster's Analytical Service Laboratory, one of the many research facilities which requested assistance for upgrading through the BAR Institutional Development Grant, last February 1, 2012.

IPOPHIL SEMINAR. Vice-Chancellor Maria Victoria O. Espaldon (topmost) welcomes participants of a special seminar conducted by the Intellectual Property Philippines and sponsored by the UPLB Center for Technology Transfer and Entrepreneurship on the Innovation and Technology Support Office last February 21, 2012.

PREPARING PROPOSALS. Researchers from various university units conduct a series of meetings in January, 2012 with Vice-Chancellor Maria Victoria O. Espaldon and Assistant to the Vice-Chancellor Edna A. Aguilar (4th and 5th from left) in preparing proposals for possible funding under the CHED's National Higher Education Research Agenda.

NATIONAL ORGANIC AGRI BOARD VISIT. Members and representatives of the National Organic Agriculture Board, with staff from the DA-Bureau of Agricultural Research and researchers from UPLB, visit some of the university's experimental and production areas for organically-grown crops last February 28, 2012.

Volume 4 Number 1 November 2011 - June 2012


TRADE MISSION VISIT. Chancellor Rex Victor O. Cruz receives a token from Ms. Connie da Cunha, President of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Australia Philippines Inc. (CCIAPO) during the chamber's trade mission to the Philippines last February 29, 2012. Ms. Cunha and Ms. Gina Luck, CCIAPI Director for International Trade are accompanied by ViceChancellor Maria Victoria O. Espaldon toured the 17-office UPLB Technology Business Incubator at the 3rd floor of the UPLB CTTE Building.

103rd CA FOUNDATION DAY SYMPO. Agriculture Secretary Hon. Proceso J. Alcala delivers a keynote on organic agriculture during the College of Agriculture's Foundation Day Symposium and ceremonially leads, with Chancellor Rex Victor O. Cruz, the donation of a brand new tractor to the Crop Science Cluster last March 8, 2012 at the Agronomy-Soils-Horti Building.

Official Research, Development and Extension Newsletter of the University of the Philippines Los Baos

The RDE Digest

managing editor/ layout
Florante A. Cruz

is published semi-annually by the Office of the Vice-Chancellor for Research and Extension (OVCRE), University of the Philippines Los Baos (UPLB). It is released every April and October each year, in time for the UPLB Commencement Exercises and UPLB Loyalty Day, respectively. Contributions related to research and extension from UPLB faculty and staff are welcome. Please send manuscripts and digital photographs via email: Comments on the published content can also be sent through the same email address. Requests for use of content for publication should be addressed to the Editors. For inquiries, please contact us at: Information Management and Technology Utilization Section OVCRE Building, Kanluran cor. Lanzones Roads, UPLB, College, Laguna 4031 Philippines Tel. No. (63) 49 536-5326 , VOIP: 1520, Email:

The RDE Digest

regular writers/ editors

Florante A. Cruz Rosario G. Gabatin

Jill Danice T. Buenaobra

production/ circulation
Evelyn E. Bite Alex C. Genil

Maria Victoria O. Espaldon


University of the Philippines Los Baos Research, Development and Extension Digest