IPA Awardees for June 2012

Jaziel R. Vitug, Jeffrey C. De Vero, Glaiza Rose S. Blanca, Roland B. Sarmago and Wilson O. Garcia
National Institute of Physics
College of Science
UP Diliman

Stoichiometric transfer by infrared pulsed laser deposition of y-doped Bi–Sr–Ca–Cu–O investigated using time-resolved optical emission spectroscopy. J. D. R. Vitug, J. C. De Vero, G. R. S. Blanca, R. V. Sarmago, and W. O. Garcia, Journal of Applied Spectroscopy, Vol. 78, No. 6 (2012) 866-860.

We are able to monitor optical emission of light from laser ablation on of ceramic superconductors. Theslow/nano-second unit of the streak camera was used to see the time evolution of the signature lines of each of the precursor elements of the targets. The plasma contained the molecular valences that correspond to the target molecule. We compared the optical emission results with the composition of the target and deposited films. Indeed, using optical measurements we verify stoichiometric ablation using IR laser.

Link to the article http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10812-012-9544-z?LI=true

Randy Rhon S. Lapuz and Dennis V. Umali
College of Veterinary Medicine
UP Los Baños

Comparison of the Prevalence of Salmonella Infection in Layer Hens from Commercial Layer Farms with High and Low Rodent Densities. Randy Rhon Simoun Lapuz, Dennis Villaseñor Umali, Terumasa Suzuki, Kazutoshi Shirota, and Hiromitsu Katoh . 2012. Avian Diseases 56 (1):29-34.

A comparison on the prevalence of Salmonella infection in layer hens from commercial layer farms with high and low rodent densities was investigated. Results showed that 5.26% of chicken samples from commercial layer farms with high rodent density scores were positive for Salmonella spp. whereas no Salmonella were isolated from chicken samples from commercial layer farms with low rodent density scores. Moreover, majority of Salmonella spp. especially Salmonella Enteritidis were isolated from internal organs of chickens such as the liver and oviduct. In addition, the epidemiological link of Salmonella infection between layer hens and roof rats inside the poultry houses was elucidated. By pulse field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) analysis, similar PFGE patterns were shared by Salmonella spp. from roof rats and layer hens, which indicates that these strains were very closely related.These finding indicate that rodents play a significant role in the Salmonella status of poultry flocks. The persistent Salmonella infection inside layer houses with high rodent densities may have been amplified by the increasing numbers in the rodent population over the years and thereby, increasing the opportunity for environment-rat-chicken interaction and transmission of Salmonella to chickens. As such even though replacement pullets were obtained from Salmonella-free breeders and rearing units, it is very plausible that poultry flocks could still be infected with Salmonella through rodents. This is probably one of the major reasons why layer houses can be persistently infected by Salmonella even when the facilities were thoroughly cleaned and disinfected. It is therefore noteworthy to suggest that the practice of monitoring of Salmonella in rodents inside the poultry premises may be used as an additional and effective tool in the assessment of the Salmonella status of layer flocks.The sea catfish, kanduli, is an important fishery resource in the Philippines and is abundant in Laguna de Bay. There used to be five species of kanduli in the lake. Due to overfishing and improper fishing equipment, however, their numbers was greatly reduced. Today the kanduli population recovered but only the endemic species A. manillensis and the native species A. dispar remained. These two species look very similar in terms of external appearance and can only be distinguished based on tooth patch morphology. It is important for management purposes to be able to differentiate between the species. In this study, geometric morphometrics was used to examine shape variation between those two species. Geometric morphometrics is a widely used tool in studying shape variation in fish populations, especially in morphologically similar groups. Samples were taken from Binangonan, Tanay, and Calamba areas of Laguna de Bay. Shape differences between species and their populations were significant, but the groups were difficult to differentiate due to high overlaps in Canonical Variate Analysis (CVA) plots. This was attributed to possible introgression between A. manillensis and A. dispar.

Link to the article http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22545525

Michelle V.  Paraso, Nieva T. Librojo-Basilio, Renato A. Vega, Carmelita M. Rebancos, Maxima, E. Flavier, Pablo P. Ocampo and Severino S. Capitan
College of Veterinary Medicine, College of Arts and Sciences, SESAM and College of Agriculture
UP Los Baños

17β-Estradiol and Organochlorine Pesticide Levels in the East and West Sites of Laguna de Bay. Journal of Environmental Science and Management (2011) 14(2): 36-42.

In this study conducted in 2010, the presence of the primary female sex hormone 17-beta estradiol (E2) was evaluated in Laguna de Bay. Water samples were collected from 16 sites along the east and west bay of the lake adjacent to potential sources of E2, specifically, residential areas and animal farms. Results show hormone levels that were much higher than those found in surface waters in other Asian countries, which suggests sewage contamination in the lake occurring at a larger scale. The obtained levels exceeded the reported limit for the production of sexual abnormalities in male fish. The current weight of evidence on the effects of exposure to E2 in fish and in wildlife entails the implementation of measures that would prevent the discharge of sewage into the lake.

Link to the article http://journals.uplb.edu.ph/index.php/JESAM/article/view/673

Michelle V.  Paraso, Nieva T. Librojo-Basilio, Renato A. Vega, Carmelita M. Rebancos, Pablo P. Ocampo and Severino S. Capitan
College of Veterinary Medicine, College of Arts and Sciences, SESAM and College of Agriculture
UP Los Baños

Melanomacrophage centers and hepatosomatic index in common carp, (Cyprinus carpio Linnaeus 1758) (Actinopterigii:Cyprinidae) introduced to the east and west sites of Laguna de Bay, Philippines. Philippine Journal of Veterinary Medicine (2011) 48(2):95-100.

The observed changes in the liver of common carps caged for 30 days along the east and west bay of Laguna de Bay could be due to pollutant exposure. This was the conclusion in the present study that examined adult male fish for indicators that include liver melanomacrophage centers (MMCs), which are pigmented aggregates of inflammation, and hepatosomatic index (HSI), defined as the ratio of liver weight to body weight that reflect the ability of fish to tolerate environmental stressors such as pollutants. These indicators not only provide a measure of fish response to stressors; it also facilitates the identification of potential pollution hotspots. Compared to the reference group, caged fish had more numerous and bigger MMCs with a greater proportion of hemosiderin and melanin pigments. HSI, which is likewise used as a marker of nutritional and energy condition in fish, was also lower in the caged group. The implication of these observations in overall fish health in Laguna de Bay could be as subject of future studies.

Link to the article http://journals.uplb.edu.ph/index.php/PJVM/article/view/664/608


Emilia A. Lastica and Jezie A. Acorda
College of Veterinary Medicine
UP Los Baños

B-mode echocardiographic features, measurements and echo mean values in captive reticulated pythons, Python reticulatus (Schneider, 1801) (Reptilia: Squamata: Pythonidae). Philippine Journal of Veterinary Medicine 49 (1): 80-14

Diagnostic ultrasound was used in 12 apparently healthy captive reticulated pythons, 4 males and 8 females, weighing 3.5-14.4 kg, to image and measure the different structures of the heart and to determine the brightness of the structures. The ventricle, left atrium, right atrium, sinus venosus, pulmonary trunk and the three ventricular cavities, namely, ventral cavum pulmonale, right dorsal cavum venosum and left dorsal cavum arteriosum as well as the muscular ridges, primarily the horizontal septum of the ventricle, were visualized in longitudinal scans as hypoechoic structures. The lumen of the different chambers appeared anechoic or dark. Transverse scans from the apex to the base revealed the three ventricular cavities, horizontal septum, sinus venosus, left and right atria and efferent trunks. The measurements and echo mean values (brightness) of the different structures were obtained. The results of the present study can be used as reference for diagnosis of cardiac diseases and disorders in reticulated pythons.

Link to the article http://journals.uplb.edu.ph/index.php/PJVM/ article/view/740

 Salcedo L. Eduardo
College of Veterinary Medicine
UP Los Baños

Species of the genus Pseudomenopon Mjöberg, 1910 (Mallophaga: Amblycera: Menoponidae) occurring on Philippine Rallidae (Aves: Gruiformes) with description of a new species, Pseudomenopon micosai. Philippine Journal of Veterinary Medicine, 49 (1): 21-29, 2012.

This research showed that birds of the rail family (tikling and relatives group) in the Philippines were infested with three species of chewing lice of the genus Pseudomenopon, two of which are previously known namely Pseudomenopon scopulacorne and Pseudomenoponpilosum and a third species which is new to science and named as Pseudomenopon micosai. This diversity of lice can cause damage to their host most especially in heavy infestation and the information provided will be useful in the management of these birds especially when captive breeding becomes necessary for their conservation and preservation because of the increasing loss of their habitat. It is a known fact that parasitism in wild birds when kept in confinement can built up easily and may be the cause of failure in conservation efforts. The need to known the kind of species of parasites affecting the birds becomes crucial.

Link to the article http://journals.uplb.edu.ph/index.php/PJVM/article/view/742

Joselito C. Magadia
School of Statistics
UP Diliman

Risk of Bottle-feeding for Rapid Weight Gain During the First Year of Life. Li, R., Magadia, J., Fein, S.B. Grummer-Strawn, L. M. (2012). Risk of Bottle- feeding for Rapid Weight Gain During the First Year of Life. Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, Vol. 166 (No. 5), pp. 431-436.

To better understand the mechanism behind breastfeeding and childhood obesity, the researchers assessed the association of weight gain with the model of milk delivery aside from the type of milk given to infants. Pregnant women were recruited from a consumer mail panel throughout the United States between May 2005 and June 2007. It was concluded that infant weight gain might be associated not only with type of milk consumed but also with mode of milk delivery.

Link to the article http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22566543

Jae Lord Dexter C. Filipinas and Percival F. Almoro
National Institute of Physics
UP Diliman

Vibration detection using focus analysis of interferograms. J. C. Filipinas and P. F. Almoro, “Vibration detection using focus analysis of interferograms,” Applied Optics 51, 1431-1435 (2012).

Interferometry is a family of techniques where electromagnetic waves are superimposed and the resulting interferogram fringe pattern is analyzed to obtain information about the interfering waves. As the fringe pattern contrast varies with the coherence of the light source used or the intensity ratio of the interfering beams, fringe contrast is also highly dependent on the stability of the interferometer setup. Accordingly the set up must be tightly controlled, and extraneous vibrations and disturbances such as foot stomps from laboratory personnel, a breeze blowing in the room, a loud sound from audio speakers and air compressors excluded. In the field of image processing, a metric called statistical focus measure [an example of which is gray- level variance (GLVA)] has been demonstrated to be fairly robust to image noise. While statistical focus measures have been applied in the field of optical reconstructions for spatial object localization, to our knowledge they have not been applied to the detection of vibrations. In our technique, we use Mach-Zehnder interferometry to obtain temporal plots of interferograms which we analyze statistically in order to detect vibrations.

Link to the article http://www.opticsinfobase.org/ao/abstract.cfm?uri=ao-51-9-1431