IMG 0581 1The scientific poster of the University of the Philippines Mindanao placed second in the recently concluded 2023 Mindanao Regional Scientific Meeting (RSM) organized by the National Academy of Science and Technology and the Mindanao Cluster of DOST Regional Offices which was hosted by DOST Regional Office XI last April 12-13 in Acacia Hotel, Davao City.

The scientific poster was based on the study entitled “Integrated Wastewater-Based Epidemiology (WBE) and Data Analytics for Community-Level COVID-19 Surveillance in an Urban Community in Davao City”, which applied WBE, sewer shed mapping, and data analytics in selecting the ideal sites for continuous wastewater surveillance of COVID-19.

The WBE has been integrated into the COVID-19 response of over 60 countries worldwide because the SARS-CoV-2 virus is fecally shed in both symptomatic and asymptomatic COVID-19 cases.

Community-level wastewater data are useful in forecasting COVID-19 surges when wastewater contributors are identifiable. Wastewater samples from three barangay sampling sites in Davao City were collected and analyzed from July 2021 to June 2022.

Their poster concluded that sewer shed mapping is vital in the preparation phase of WBE, while data analytics and mathematical modeling facilitate the selection of wastewater surveillance sites that best represent the community for public health surveillance.

Said scientific poster was authored by Dann Marie N. Del Mundo and co-authored by Refeim M. Miguel, Kieffer Arben Go, Maria Catherine B. Otero, Caroline Marie B. Jaraula, Vladimer B. Kobayashi, Emmanuel S. Baja, and Lyre Anni E. Murao.

Meanwhile, the scientific poster of MSU-Iligan Institute of Technology (MSU-IIT) placed first with their study on coconut oil-based polyurethane (PU) foam that has potential uses in oil spill response and wastewater treatment methods.

Christine Joy M. Omisol, the lead author, said their achievement has opened opportunities for advancing the scientific community by highlighting the potential of sustainable polymers in addressing oil pollution.

“The development of eco-friendly and cost-effective polymers derived from natural sources shows promise in mitigating the impact of oil spills. With this achievement, we hope to inspire researchers to continue investing in innovative technologies and collaborations to work towards a cleaner and healthier environment,” she added.

Still on a laboratory scale, Omisol shared that her team is working on a prototype to be sent for the cleanup operations in the oil spill incident off eastern Oriental Mindoro. She added that they are aiming to design its production on a larger scale not only for oil spill responses but also as a material for wastewater treatment.

Mindanao State University – Tawi-Tawi College of Technology and Oceanography (MSU-TCTO) placed third for their poster on “Functional Genes Responsible for Acute Hyposaline Stress Resistance in the Kappa Carrageenan-Treated Black Tiger Shrimp Penaeus monodon Postlarvae for a Probable Climate Change Adaptation”, authored by Yashier U. Jumah and co-authored by Augusto E. Serrano Jr.

The study was conducted to identify the associated genes that might be responsible for acute hyposaline resistance in the black tiger shrimp postlarvae.

The posters were judged based on Scientific Merit/Content, Relevance to National Development, and Poster Effectivity. The annual scientific poster session is one of the highlights of Mindanao RSM. The contest features the latest regional research outputs of participating higher education institutions, research centers, and government agencies. (Percival Cyber Vargas)


DOST XI S&T Information and Promotion