Academician in the Forefront of Plant Biotechnology. It there is a plant expert in the Philippines who can answer questions on plant biotechnology, genetically modified organisms (GMOs), and nutritional acceptability of plant foods, it would probably be no other than Dr. Evelyn Mae Tecson Mendoza.
For more than 25 years Dr. Mendoza has been actively conducting researchers on molecular mechanism of plant resistance to pests and disease, biochemical factors affecting nutritional quality and acceptability of plants foods, as well as plant biochemistry, molecular biology, and biotechnology applications in plant breeding.
Through her many efforts, she assures people that there’s nothing to fear about genetically modified foods. She notes that new agricultural biotechnology products are being developed through tissue culture, gene-cloning, genome mapping, marker-assisted breeding, and diagnostics.
As program leader of the plant biotechnology program at the University of the Philippines Los Banos (UPLB), Dr. Mendoza conducts local and international consultations on rules governing biotech plants and plant products. She also led the development of the masteral and doctoral programs in molecular biology and biotechnology at UPLB.
Dr. Mendoza obtained her bachelor’s degree in chemistry (cum laude) from Mapua Institute of Technology in 1967, and her master’s degree (1971) and doctorate degree (1975) in biochemistry from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in the United States. She is currently a professor of biochemistry at the Institute of Plant Breeding (IPB), College of Agriculture, and affiliate professor at the Institute of Chemistry, College of Arts and Sciences, at UPLB. Dr. Mendoza was elected to the National Academy of Science and Technology as an academician in 1992.