Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Genetics Camp 2017: Marking A New Goal for Sustainable Development

By Jerard Monge (Riboswitch)



LOS BANOS, LAGUNA – Hosted by The UPLB Genetics Society (GeneSoc), co-organized by Makiling Center for Mountain Ecosystems and co-presented by 2030 Youth Force in the Philippines, Genetics Camp 2017 was held last March 3 to 5 at the College of Forestry and Natural Resources of the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UP CFNR).

With the theme “Sustaining the Indi-GENEous: Amplifying Forest Genetics for Glocal Climate Change Resiliency,” GeneSoc brought together young scientists, innovators and environmentalists on the 12th installment of Genetics Camp. This year, GeneSoc, furthered its aim of promoting the creative appreciation of genetics by introducing two of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals: SDG 13, Climate Action, and SDG 15, Life on Land, during the camp.

Timely and relevant talks by environmental advocates and scientists at the top of their field highlighted this year’s Genetics Camp. Among the speakers during the 3-day event were highly revered UP CFNR professors including Dr. Lerma S.J. Maldia, Dr. Enrique L. Tolentino and Dr. Wilfredo Carandang. Joining them is the Executive Director of the Young Environmental Forum, Engr. Ludwig O. Federigan. Ten different schools from various parts of the Philippines competed in a number of individual and group competitions such as the Inter-High School Genetics Quiz Contest, Essay Writing Contest, Poster-Slogan Making Contest, Advocacy Speech, Debate and the new addition for this year’s contests, the Search for the Young Geneticist of the Year.


Philippine Science High School Western Visayas Campus bested the ten competing schools, copping their 4th consecutive overall championship title since 2014, followed by Philippine Science High School Bicol Region Campus and University of Santo Tomas Senior High School, earning their place as the 2nd and 3rd overall winners, respectively, of Genetics Camp 2017. Bernabe Angel D. Salazar from Philippine Science High School Western Visayas Campus was selected as the Young Geneticist of the Year. The search is an effort of GeneSoc in sustaining the goals of the camp by selecting delegates who could best represent and lead the activities for the greater appreciation of genetics in their schools.

Apart from the individual and group competitions, the participants, together with their teachers, also had a chance to make new friends with unforgettable activities such as the Cultural Festival, Search for Mr. and Ms. Genetics Camp 2017 and Amazing Race to the Forest. The participants also brought home newfound knowledge and skills from the Capacity Building organized by the 2030 Youth Force of the Philippines and from tours at the Museum of Natural History, Makiling Botanic Gardens and the CFNR Forest Genetics Lab. The new and innovative activities for this year’s Genetics Camp were powered by the Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST – PCAARRD). 

Genetics Camp 2017 would like to thank the Philippine Council for Agriculture (PCC), Ecosystems Research and Development Bureau of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR – ERDB) and the event’s advocacy partner, Detox Pilipinas. The national event would also like to extend its gratitude to Asshulz and Pinoy Catalyst for their media coverage.#

For the complete list of winners, visit our website.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Proactive Kabilin: Connecting Generations Through Preconception Health

By Liabel Pena (Casposons)
Team Proactive Kabilin . From L to R: Ms. Aster Lynn Sur, Liabel Pena, Jeanne Ruth Basas, Jedidiah Sarmiento,
Angelica Obrador, Dr. Christian Gomez (Program Manager, Ideas Positive) (Photo: Ideas Positive/Unilab Foundation)

Volunteer Youth Leaders for Health - Los Baños Chapter (VYLH-LB) as Team Proactive Kabilin, earned a finalist spot in Unilab Foundation’s 7th Ideas Positive Run last February 7 to 11, 2017 during the Boot Camp held in Ace Hotel, Mandaluyong City.

The team comprised of members from four of seven partner organizations of VYLH-LB: Maria Liabel Peña, current VYLH-LB coordinator and VYLH Committee Head of The UPLB Genetics Society, Jeanne Ruth Basas, team leader of Team Proactive Kabilin, from Philippine Association of Nutrition Alpha Omega Chapter, Jedidiah Sarmiento from The UP Community Broadcasters’ Society Inc., and Angelica Obrador from the first community partner of VYLH-LB, the Rotaract Club of Los Banos; under the mentorship of Aster Lynn Sur, RN from UP Manila and VYLH. The project was aptly entitled Kabilin Kalusugan for LB Nanays. “Kabilin” is a bisayan term translated as “legacy,” which was also the batchname of the teammates during the VYLH’s first NCR-South Luzon Cluster Youth Camp last October 2016.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

GeneSoc’s K4Health Project among the finalists in 14th TAYO Awards


Photo: Ten Accomplished Youth Organization (TAYO) Foundation 
By Rency Raquid (Riboswitch)

MANILA – The UPLB Genetics Society landed on the Top 20 of this year’s Search for Ten Accomplished Youth Organizations (TAYO) of the Philippines courtesy of its project, K4Health: Kabataan for Health – Kabataang Kabalikat ng Komunidad Para Sa Kalusugan. 

The prestigious search, dubbed as the “FAMAS Awards” of youth organizations, was organized by TAYO Awards Foundation Inc., National Youth Commission, Offices of the Senator Bam Aquino and Senator Francis Pangilinan and has been running for fourteen (14) years already. The K4Health Project of the organization was among the 443 entries from different organizations across the archipelago which undergone the rigorous process of field validation and panel deliberations before clinching a spot in the National Finals. 

The TAYO Week, which was held last February 12-16, 2017 at the Diamond Hotel, Manila, was attended by GeneSoc President, Merc Emil Matienzo (Batch Riboswitch). The National Judging and Mentoring held at the Senate of the Philippines were among the highlights of the week-long activities. GeneSoc also had the chance to share the hopeful visions of the K4Health project in promoting maternal and infant health in a morning radio program, Rated PG. Matienzo emphasized in aninterview at DZRH AM 666 that “These are the health issues which are underrated and only few people know about. So, we thought that the youth can be an instrument in providing solutions in their own community through advocating for birth defects prevention and maternal care.”

The TAYO Week was also co-presented by Coca-Cola Foundation Philippines, Inc., and in partnership with Jollibee Foods Corporation, San Miguel Corporation, Aboitiz Equity Ventures, Lenovo, Smart Communications, and De La Salle – College of Saint Benilde.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Batch Helitron: A New Splash in the Gene Pool

By Batch Helitron
Compiled by Sean Gacutan

BATCH HELITRON (Photo: @seangctn)
Joining GeneSoc was one of the most unforgettable experience in our lives. GeneSoc brought us to our full potential and continues to help us grow, ultimately to promote and create awareness on the science of genetics, as well as to become socially relevant and hone our greatest possibility and that is to be well rounded in all forms.

Friday, April 14, 2017

2016-2017 Outstanding GeneSoc Members

By Jerard Monge

Awarding of the Top 44 CAS Outstanding Students During the 44th CAS Founding Anniversary
(L-R: Paul Jhon P. Diezon, Morel Dominic D. Umipon, Rochelle B. Sarmiento, Rozel B. Razal and Sean Lemuel L. Santos)

Newly Inducted Members of the Phi Sigma Biological Sciences Honor Society
Morel Dominic D. Umipon (Batch Proteasome) and Paul Jhon P. Diezon (Batch Phagemids) were among the newly inducted members of the Phi Sigma Biological Sciences Honor Society during the induction ceremony held last March 26, 2017 at University of the Philippines Diliman.

The Phi Sigma Biological Sciences Honor Society is an association of chapters that recognizes exemplary undergraduate students enrolled in a 4-year degree program under an accredited university. Membership to this honor society is highly exclusive, with invitations handed only to prospective summa and magna cum laude graduates.

Five GeneSoc Members, Among the 2016 Top 44 CAS Outstanding Students
Mr. Umipon and Mr. Diezon were also among the awardees during the 44th College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) Founding Anniversary. Mr. Umipon ranked 3rd while Mr. Diezon ranked 4th in the Senior Category. Mr. Diezon was also awarded the 2016 CAS Most Outstanding Student. Joining them is Ms. Rochelle B. Sarmiento (Batch Polylinker) who placed 11th in the same category. Ms. Rozel B. Razal (Batch Aptamers) and Mr. Sean Lemuel L. Santos (Batch Hybrizyme) were also among the 2016 CAS Outstanding Students, ranking 3rd under the Junior Category and 2nd in the Sophomore Category, respectively.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

GeneSoc features Genetics in the Electromagnetic Spectrum

The UPLB Genetics Society illuminates the science of light and genetics as we celebrate BIO 30 Week 2017 with the theme “Sun-kissed genes: Perceiving Genetics in the Electromagnetic Spectrum,” this April 3 to 7 at the Wing C lobby of the Institute of Biological Sciences of the University of the Philippines Los Baños (IBS-UPLB).

The electromagnetic spectrum is composed of electromagnetic (EM) radiations which have varying wavelengths, frequencies and energy. It includes radiowaves, microwaves, infrared radiation (IR), visible light, ultraviolet (UV) light, X-rays and gamma rays. These electromagnetic radiations have various impacts on the growth and development of many organisms, which can be molecularly elucidated.

Studies related to these radiations are continuously emerging in the 21st century, divulging the drawbacks and benefits of each in many organisms.