Diamed-Illumina, PGC sponsor Agrigenomics sympo

by Jickerson Lado (Integrons)

The ‘-omics’ era is here.

With the leading global genome sequencing company, Illumina, exclusively distributed by Diamed in the Philippines, in partnership with the Philippine Genome Center (PGC) – Agriculture, a symposium on genomic advancements in agriculture was held in UPLB this July 10 at Umali Auditorium, SEARCA.

More than a hundred attendees coming from different institutions and agencies in and out of UPLB completely filled the venue. The program started with Dr. Rita Laude, PGC-Agriculture Program Director, welcoming the participants and emphasizing the on-going projects of PGC-Agri.

Dr. Cindy Lawley explaining the ubiquity of
sequencing and its applications.
Dr. Cindy Lawley, Senior Manager, Market Development of Illumina, opened the sympo proper by discussing genomic selection in agriculture species, stressing the significance of the approach in improving US dairy industry. It was followed by Dr. Zenaida Magbanua, DOST and UP Balik Scientist, explaining the use of next generation sequencing (NGS) for transcriptomics (total RNA) and miRNAomics (total miRNA) in studying the interaction of rice and its pest, bacterial panicle blight. Dr. Magbanua also serves as a consultant to the Coconut Genome Sequencing Project of PGC.

For the second half of the program, Dr. Lawley focused on agrigenomic technologies comparing sequence- and assay-based genotyping, and featuring Illumina NGS sequencers with notes on assembling and annotating sequence output to make sense of data. Dr. Lawley mentioned that this is also her first time in the Philippines and remarked that “Filipinos are smiling and courteous people.” An open forum ended the sympo proper.

Mr. Alden Arellano, general manager of Diamed and a proud GeneSoc alumnus (Batch Snurps) posed a question in his closing remarks, “If research is the journey, what is the destination?” pertaining to the mantra no great journey is done overnight and simple steps are pivotal. He answered by citing several researches in dairy science, crops specifically rice, and the improvement of Philippine mangoes.

About Diamed

Established in 1998, Diamed Enterprise has become a trusted and reliable provider of Life Science and Diagnostics products in the Philippines. With cutting edge companies in its portfolio, it has accompanied the country's top scientists in performing the most advanced researches. The company is now boosting its Molecular Diagnostics with AIT MDX, Vienna Lab and In Vivo Scribe Technologies. (diamed.com.ph)


Diamed has been one of the generous sponsors of major activities of GeneSoc like the Genetics Camp (GenCamp) and the National Intercollegiate Genetics Quiz Contest (NIGQC).

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