Posts Tagged ‘Scientist


Dr. Eriberta Nepomuceno Navera

Dr. Eriberta Nepomuceno Navera

Dr. Eriberta Nepomuceno Navera is a native of As, Albay.  At an early age, the girl who loved collecting butterflies, concocting solutions and putting all sorts of things together was already determined to become a scientist and inventor.  Dr. Navera took up Biochemistry at the Univeristy of Sto. Tomas.  Then, in 1987, she was accepted as a Monbusho scholar at the University of Tokyo Research Center of Advanced Science and Technology.  She was the first Filipino and the first non-Japanese ever to be accepted in the said university.  Dr. Navera graduated with a Doctoral Degree in Engineering, specializing in biosensors and bioelectronics.

One of Dr. Navera’s most popular contributions to science was her invention and development of the Hydro Early Warning Device, which won the 1993 National Science Award.  Her pioneering work on the Acetyl Choline Sensor was likewise lauded worldwide.

Dr. Navera was not only confined inside the laboratory.  After her studies abroad, she went back to her hometown and taught Biochemistry at the Bicol University.  Later on, she was appointed as Assistant Director of the University’s Research Center and Director of the Institute for Peace and Security Studies.

In 1999, she was appointed as the Regional Director of the Department of Science and Technology Regional Office No. V (DOST V).  As Regional Director, Dr. Navera’s thrust was the use of science and technology to improve the region’s living conditions.  She worked to strengthen the region’s exportable resources and products according to global standards, through the use of science and technology. – Allen A. Liberato


Empowering the Farmers

Dr. Romulo G. Davide

Farmers who are also scientists and businessmen—that’s what Dr. Romulo G. Davide envisions for Filipino farmers.  He wants to train farmers to empower them using science and technology.

Dr. Davide’s farmer-scientist program has empowered upland farmers in Cebu to determine the appropriate technologies for their farms.  Through Dr. Davide’s  program, the farmers learned integrated pest management, and thus encouraging them not to depended on toxic pesticides.  They also learned to develop their own hybrid corn producing their own seeds from their farms.

Dr. Davide’s desire to serve his fellow Filipinos is unquestionable.  After gaining his bachelor’s degree from the University of the Philippines’ College of Agriculture, he went to the United States where he earned his masters and doctorate degrees from the Oklahoma State University and North Carolina State University, respectively.  Shortly after receiving his doctorate degree in nematology and plant pathology in 1966, he was offered a professorial job that he declined because of his commitment to his country. 

This commitment would highlight his prolific career.  Dr. Davide is internationally recognized for his contributions to nematology, including the national survey, identification, and control of nematodes that infest economic crops.  He also discovered the first and safest biological control agent, called BIOACT, against nematodes.  For these and other works, Dr. Davide has the distinction of being the first Filipino to be included in the “Who’s Who” in nematology.

Asked to comment on his career and contributions as teacher, scientist, and mentor, Dr. Romulo Davide shrugged all the accolade aside, saying that he is just an instrument of God.


► Eileen Calaycay-Cardona.  ‘There are no barren soils, only barren minds.”

► National Academy of Science and Technology.


Dr. Marcos P. Vega

Dr.Marcos P. Vega

Dr.Marcos P. Vega

Dr. Marcos P. Mega is an Educator, Scientist, and a Researchers.

“Be the best of whatever you are.”  This philosophy has guided Dr. Marcos P. Vega throughout his life.  Upon graduating with honors at the University of the Philippines, Los Banos (UPLB), he immediately joined the faculty of the State University.  It did not take long for him to earn the reputation of being one of the best faculty members in the UP College of Agriculture.

Dr. Vega left for the U.S.A in 1956 to take a master’s degree in Weed Science.  After year, be returned to UPLB and launched the university’s Weed Science Program.  He was appointed as the Director of Research in 1970.  He formulated the development strategies for the country’s rice and con program.  This greatly helped in boosting the country’s production of rice and corn.

Dr. Vega’s contributions to the study of weed science did not end there.  he gained international recognition as an expert in his field.  In 1972, he joined the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), based in Los Banos, Laguna.  He was the first Filipino to be appointed as director IRRI.  After five years, he was promoted to Deputy Director General, the second highest position in the institute.  As an IRRI administrator, he involved national scientists in strengthening and accelerating rice improvement programs in the Philippines and in other countries.


A World-class Filipino Physicist

In a country like the Philippines where there are less than a hundred doctorate degree holders in physics,  Dr. Arnel Salvador stands as a beacon to aspiring young scientists.  He is living proof that even with the lack of viable graduate schools in the country, one can still make a mark in his or her chosen profession.  If you work hard for it, you can be someone your nation will be proud of.  You can be an Arnel Salvador.

Dr. Salvador led a team of scientists from the Research and Extension, National Institute of Physics (NIP), who made breakthroughs in the field of fiber optic communications.  The team produced unique semiconductor materials like gallium arsenide (GaAs) and aluminum-gallium arsenide AIGaAs). By using a process called molecular beam enable faster and superior data transmission over conventional copper wires found in usual cables.

Dr. Salvador’s team won the converted Most Outstanding Research and Development Award given by the Philippine Council for Advanced Science and Technology-Department of Science and Technology (PCAS-TD-DOST).

Dr. Salvador earned his bachelor’s degree in Physics, cum laude, from the University of the Philippines in May 1983.  He earned his Ph.D. in physics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in December 1993 in the United States.  He is now the Associate Director for Research and Extension, National Institute of Physics (NIP, University of the Philippines).


► Filipino physicists share Einstein’s drive.


Dr. Michael D. Purugganan

michaelDr. Michael D. Purugganan, a man described by his peers as one who is “distressingly fond of black clothing,” is a principal investigator for plant genome diversity

Have you seen mangoes or papaya with (really) flawless skins, not to mention pest-resistant?  Or maybe big gumamela flowers in varying colors?  Well, these are just examples of what plant geneticists achieve in their work.

Dr. Michael D. Purugganan is one such scientist who goes deeper into probing plants by studying the genes involved in controlling plant shoot formation and flower development.  He specializes in evolutionary genetics of plants.

Dr. Purugganan is currently an associate professor of genetics at the north Carolina State University in the United States.  He heads a laboratory in the Department of Genetics at NCSU, which engages in assessing the factors involved in the development of plants of the same species on the molecular level.

His team looks into the specific plant development pathways then maps and isolates the genes responsible for the plant’s form the intricate floral patterns and variations—a glimpse into a plant’s evolutionary adaptation and diversity.

A prolific researcher who has published papers in the fields of molecular population genetics, quantitative genetics, developmental biology and evolutionary ecology.  Dr. Purugganan was named William Neal Reynolds Professor of Genetics (2005). 

Dr. Parugganan obtained his undergraduate degree in chemistry from the University of the Philippines Diliman (1985), his master’s degree in empirical and theoretical biophysical chemistry from Columbia University, and his Ph.D in botany from the University of Georgia in 1993.


Michael D. Purugganan Personal Homepage.

Department of Genetics Laboratory Homepage, NCSU. http://purugganan.gnets.ncsu.edj/


Photo courtesy:  puruggananlab


Francisco O. Santos

Born in Calizon, Bulacan, Dr. Santos earned this AB and MS degrees at the University of the Philippines in 1912 and 1919, respectively.  Later in 1922, he earned his doctorate degree in Biochemistry from Yale University, USA. 

He was conferred the National Scientist Award in 1983 by being an outstanding educator and eminent scientist in the field of human nutrition and agricultural chemistry.  He is well remembered for his deep concern and interest in the improvement of nutrition of the Filipinos, especially in laboring and deprived areas. 

Dr. Santos established the anti-beriberi content of sweet potato and demonstrated the food value of this crop.  He was among the very first to advocate home gardening, with fruits and vegetables as good source of supplementary vitamins. – Bato Balani

July 2020

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