IPA Recipients for November 2017

David Emmanuel M. General
Museum of Natural History
UP Los Baños

First Global Molecular Phylogeny and Biogeographical Analysis of Two Arachnid Orders (Schizomida and Uropygi) Supports a Tropical Pangean Origin and Mid-Cretaceous Diversification. Journal of Biogeography, 44 (11): 2660–2672, November 2017.

Meranoplus malaysianus, a new species record for the Philippines.

Mount Hamiguitan, in Davao Oriental, is famous for a large (~225 has.) pygmy forest and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  We sampled ants in four zones (elevations in brackets): 1) near the Research Center [400 meters above sea level (masl)]; 2) established trail to Camp 4 [no fixed elevation]; 3) Camp 4 [940 masl], a semi-permanent campsite for researchers and forest guards; and 4) Camp 3 [1150 masl], another semi-permanent campsite for researchers and forest guards.  Except for Zone 2, we used a suite of techniques to sample the ants, namely: pitfall trapping; Winkler extraction of leaf litter ants; breaking of rotten twigs and logs; and opportunistic collecting.  In Zone 2, we only collected opportunistically.  A total of  1,677 ant specimens were collected.  Using current taxonomic references to many ant genera, we identified 122 species of ants, belonging to 51 genera and 8 subfamilies in the Family Formicidae.  At least two ant species are new to science.  We present a table of ant species and in which zone and how they were collected.  This is the first ever transect study of the ants of Mt. Hamiguitan.

Link to the article: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/jbi.13076/abstract
Impact Factor: (2016/2017) 4.248

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Rosario R. Rubite
Department of Biology
College of Arts and Sciences
UP Manila

Three New Species of Begonia sect. Baryandra from Panay Island, Philippines. Botanical Studies, 58: 28, 13 pages, December 2017.

Figure 1. Begonia sykakiengii R. Rubite, C.-I Peng, C.W. Lin & K.F. Chung. Leaves photographed in the field to show varied and complex foliar maculation patterns on both surfaces. A. Adaxial surface; B. Abaxial surface.

Three new species of Panay assignable to Begonia sect. Baryandra endemic to the Philippines is here described and illustrated.  Studies of literature, herbarium specimens, and living plants support the recognition of the three new species: Begonia culasiensis, B. merrilliana, and B. sykakiengii. Somatic chromosomes at metaphase were determined to be 2n = 30 for B. culasiensis and 2n = 28 for both B. merrilliana and B. sykakiengii, congruent with those of most species in sect. Baryandra.

Link to the article: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/s40529-017-0182-x
Impact Factor: (2016/2017) 1.452

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Clarissa L. Velayo
Department of Physiology
College of Medicine
UP Manila

Ultrasound Imaging of Mouse Fetal Intracranial Hemorrhage Due to Ischemia/Reperfusion. Frontiers in Physiology, 8: 340, 9 pages, May 2017.

Histological analysis results after the ischemia/reperfusion treatments. (A)A snapshot of fetuses with or without intracranial hemorrhage (see arrow) after delivery.(B) There was a significant difference in the frequency of hemorrhage determined by craniotomy of the fetuses in Normal (N) and Low Protein (LP) diet groups (p<0.05). (C) Microscopic imaging section of an LP fetal brain. Dotted circles in the microscope image indicated the hemorrhage sites.

Despite vast improvements in perinatal care during the last 30 years, the incidence rate of brain damage in babies detected after delivery remains unchanged. Brain injury while in the womb, including fetal intracranial hemorrhage or bleeding within the brain, caused by a sudden loss then return of blood flow (ischemia/reperfusion) is known as one of the primary triggers of neonatal injury. However, the mechanisms of brain injury prior to birth are poorly understood. Here we show a live mouse model for fetal intracranial hemorrhage developed to investigate the actual timing of hypoxia-ischemic events and their related mechanisms of injury. Brain injury in a baby mouse was stimulated without directly touching the fetal body but by using repeated occlusion and opening of the uterine and ovarian arteries in the mother. The fetal brains were monitored in real time by ultrasound imaging. The disappearance of blood flow in certain parts of the brain signified abnormal vascular maintenance (autoregulation) which triggered brain injury. Brain samples were then studied using microscopic techniques which confirmed earlier ultrasound findings. This study revealed “where” and “when” the intracranial hemorrhage occurs. However, “why” it occurs is subject to further investigation.

Link to the article:
Impact Factor: (2016/2017) 4.134

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Felix Rey Bueta*, James Francis Imperial** and Rinlee Butch Cervera**
Department of Engineering Science*
College of Engineering and Agro-Industrial Technology
UP Los Baños
Department of Mining, Metallurgical and Materials Engineering**
College of Engineering
UP Diliman

Structure and Conductivity of NiO/YSZ Composite Prepared Via Modified Glycine-Nitrate Process at Varying Sintering Temperatures. Ceramics International, 43 (18): 16174-16177, 15 December 2017.

SEM micrographs of NiO/YSZ composite sintered at (a) 1100℃ (b) 1300℃ (c) 1500℃ at 5000x (top) and 10000x (bottom) magnification.

Nickel oxide and Yttria-stabilized zirconia (NiO/YSZ) composite is one of the most promising mixed conducting electrode materials in both solid oxide electrolysis cell and solid oxide fuel cell applications. In this study, 50 weight % NiO and 50 weight % YSZ composite was synthesized via a modified glycine-nitrate combustion process (GNP) and the effect of sintering temperatures (1100oC, 1300oC and 1500oC) on its microstructure and electrical properties were investigated. TG/DTA and in-situ high temperature XRD revealed the thermal property behavior and the structural changes of the as-combusted precursor material. For all the samples sintered at different temperatures, room temperature XRD patterns revealed a distinct cubic phases of both YSZ and NiO while SEM images showed a porous microstructure. Conductivity measurements of the different sintered samples revealed that the total conductivities as well as the activation energies are greatly affected by different sintering temperatures.

Link to the article: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0272884217319041
Impact Factor: (2016/2017) 2.986

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Jem Valerie D. Perez and Maria Lourdes P. Dalida
Department of Chemical Engineering
College of Engineering
UP Diliman

Response Surface Methodology as a Powerful Tool to Optimize the Synthesis of Polymer-Based Graphene Oxide Nanocomposites for Simultaneous Removal of Cationic and Anionic Heavy Metal Contaminants. RSC Advances, 7 (30):18480-18490, 2017.

The presence of heavy metals such as copper (Cu) and chromium (Cr) in water supplies poses health and environmental hazards. In order to address this concern, a promising material in the form of polymer-based graphene oxide nanocomposite beads was developed. The beads are composed of different materials with corresponding properties that are favorable in removing heavy metal ions present in water by capturing them on the surface of the beads. To determine the best composition of the beads, Response Surface Methodology (RSM) was employed. In this method, the amounts of the different components of the beads were varied to establish the maximum removal efficiency for the heavy metal ions. The optimum bead composition contained 2.0% PEI, 1500 ppm GO, and 2.08% of the cross linking agent. This composition allowed Cr(VI) and Cu(II) removals of up to 91.10% and 78.18%, respectively. Overall, the synthesized CS–PEI–GO beads were proven to be effective in removing both cationic and anionic heavy metal pollutants. Because of the many favorable properties and multi-functionality of the beads, they can be applied to other contaminants as well, making the new material very promising for wastewater treatment.

Link to the article: http://pubs.rsc.org/en/content/articlelanding/2017/ra/c7ra00750g
Impact Factor: (2016/2017) 3.108

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Gabriela Lee
Department of English & Comparative Literature
College of Arts and Letters
UP Diliman

A Lover’s Guide to Breakfast Places. Kritika Kultura, 29: 386-395, 2017.

Told in a series of snippets resembling short restaurant reviews about fictional breakfast places, the story revolves around lovers Becca and Macky, and their struggle to find time for their relationship in the midst of increasingly difficult career demands.

Link to the article: http://kritikakultura.ateneo.net/
Impact Factor: Not yet available

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Allan Abraham B. Padama, Anna Patricia S. Cristobal and Joey D. Ocon*
Institute of Mathematical Sciences and Physics
College of Arts and Sciences
UP Los Baños
Department of Chemical Engineering
College of Engineering
UP Diliman

Effects of Adsorbates (CO, COH, and HCO) on the Arrangement of Pd Atoms in PdCu(111). Journal of Physical Chemistry C, 121 (33): 17818–17826, 2017.

Graphical abstract of the paper (taken from J. Phys. Chem. C. 121 (2017) 17818−17826.)

Preference of Pd atoms of PdCu to form the aggregated (a) arrangement in the presence of adsorbates (CO, HCO, and COH). In clean PdCu, non-aggregated (na) arrangement of Pd atoms is more favored. (taken from J. Phys. Chem. C. 121 (2017) 17818−17826.)

Copper (Cu) is a cheap metal that is abundant in our country. However, its non-reactive nature limits its use in industry. In gas-surface interactions for instance, expensive but reactive metals (Palladium (Pd), Platinum (Pt), etc.) are still preferred because of their known efficiency in facilitating reactions. Therefore, it is still a challenge to tune the reactivity of Cu which is usually done by alloying it with precious metals.
Palladium-Copper (PdCu) surface is among the widely used Cu based surface for hydrogen gas purification and for hydrocarbon formation. Experimental studies revealed that in PdCu, the Pd atoms prefer to be far from each other (non-aggregated arrangement). This arrangement is modified if gas molecules, such as CO, H or O, are introduced to this alloyed surface. In the presence of the molecules, Pd atoms segregate to the topmost layer of the surface which is explained by the more reactive nature of Pd than Cu.
In this study, it is clarified that the aggregated arrangement of Pd atoms in PdCu in the presence of adsorbates is not only dictated by the reactivity of Pd, but also by the electronic and geometric structures of the molecules on the surface. Furthermore, it is demonstrated that the reactivity of PdCu improves (even with small amount of Pd) if the surface and subsurface Pd atoms are arranged in an aggregated or contiguous configuration. These results are supported by the energetics and electronic properties obtained in this computational based investigation.

Link to the article: http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/acs.jpcc.7b02794
Impact Factor: (2016/2017) 4.536

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Jonalou S. Labor
Department of Communication Research
College of Mass Communication
UP Diliman

Constructs of Development from Inside the Development Communication Syllabi. International Journal of Asia-Pacific Studies, 13 (2): 23-44, 2017.

Academic discourse on development must be investigated as this shapes the way students see the way they will practice their fields. Using the syllabi of the Development Communication program of UP Los Banos, this paper argued that the content of the syllabi could be either pro development process or pro-participation. This means the students are taught that development’s nature and characteristics as well as the ways in which students are part of the creation of communication-based solutions to communities. Furthermore, I argue that the DevCom model continues to be prescriptive in its development discourse. The development communication courses are mostly skills-driven but have failed to problematize the kind of development that they are mediating and participating in. The program, via the syllabi, is also not critical of development as it continuous the top-down learning frame and approach. From an outsider’s perspective, I recommend that higher education institutions offering DevCom must revisit their development discourses and how these can be channeled and incorporated in the course content.

Link to the article: http://ijaps.usm.my/?page_id=3784
Impact Factor: Not yet available

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Michelle B. Besana and Philip Ian Padilla*
Division of Physcial Sciences and Mathematics
Division of Biological Sciences*
College of Arts and Sciences
UP Visayas

Modeling Iloilo River Water Quality. The Philippine Statistician, 66 (1): 75-92, 2017

The analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) model was used to investigate the effects of sampling sites, season, and the different easily measurable physicochemical parameters on mean fecal streptococci count in Iloilo River over time. The mean fecal streptococci counts significantly differed across the different sampling sites, a result consistent with previous studies documenting the effect of increased urbanization on fecal pollution. Fecal streptococci concentration was significantly higher during the dry season than the rainy season which could be due to prolonged dry days that allowed accumulation and build-up of microbial contaminants before being washed off during a rainfall event. There was a moderate positive association between water temperature and fecal streptococci concentration which provided further evidence for the connection between temperature and bacteria growth. There was a moderate positive association between pH and fecal streptococci concentration which supports that models incorporating various physicochemical properties used to predict bacteria concentration are site and bacteria group specific. Dissolved oxygen and salinity did not significantly affect fecal streptococci concentration. The statistical model established is useful in developing scientific understanding of the Iloilo River bacteriological system. It is also useful in discovering possible dynamics on how this system is influenced by the different geographical, meteorological, and physicochemical parameters which can be used as a tool for river bacteriological monitoring and water quality assessment.

Link to the article: 
Impact Factor: Not yet available

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Marish S. Madlangbayan, Nimfa Maren S. Tabucal, Marloe B. Sundo and Perlie P. Velasco
Department of Civil Engineering
College of Engineering and Agro-Industrial Technology
UP Los Baños

Corrosion Damage Measurement on Reinforced Concrete by Impressed Voltage Technique and Gravimetric Method. International Journal of GEOMATE, 13 (39): 198-205, November 2017.

This study investigated the effect of sea water on the corrosion behavior of reinforcing steel inconcrete. A 3% sodium chloride solution was used to simulate sea water. The solution was either used as part of the reinforced concrete (RC) mix (SN scenario), or as immersion media to simulate the exposure of RC to sea water (NS scenario), or both (SS scenario).To measure the effect of corrosion on the reinforcement of concrete, the Impressed Voltage Test (IVT) and gravimetric method were used. Results showed thatcorrosion current curves, gravimetric mass loss, the average and maximum current passed are severe for SS scenario, butnegligible if normal water was used (no solution). Incorporating the solution in the mix, regardless ofits environment, was found to cause rapid crack development in concrete. Statistical analysis suggested thatthe presence of chloride had no influence on the outcome of percent mass loss due to corrosion with respect to the normal concrete except in SS scenario.

Link to the article: 
Impact Factor: Not yet available

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Ricardo T. Bagarinao
Faculty of Education
UP Open University

Landscape Transformation in an Urbanizing Area in Laguna, Philippines: Assessing Trends and Policy Implications on the ASEAN Integration. Journal of Environmental Science and Management, 20 (1): 62-70 June 2017.

The study aims to analyze the patterns or trends of land use changes in an urbanizing segment in Laguna, Philippines amidst the creation and implementation of ASEAN Economic Cooperation and ASEAN Integration. ASEAN integration is expected to hasten urbanization in urban fringes near Metro Manila such as the study area. Analyzing the patterns of changes of the landscape in the study site could help policy makers formulate policies and guidelines that could address and manage the issues, and impacts of urbanization, respectively. Using three periods (i.e. 2003, 2005, 2010) as the temporal limits for the analysis of the study, data from GIS-enabled maps were extracted through the GIS, and patch analysis tools that could study a landscape transformation. Data were taken from NAMRIA, the local government units, Google map, other published documents, and unpublished reports. Results reveal that the area is rapidly losing its agricultural lands to urbanization. This has significant implications on the internal food security of the communities in the study area. It would also challenge the current solid waste management system, land use plan and implementation, and environmental management in the study site, which when poorly implemented may lead to some negative environmental effects such as flooding and pollution. The study recommends integrating sustainability concepts in land use planning, strictly implementing the areas’ solid waste management scheme, and integrating green architectural design such as rainwater harvesting, use of solar energy, etc. in each structural development.

Link to the article: https://journals.uplb.edu.ph/index.php/JESAM/article/view/1636
Impact Factor: (2016/2017) 0.323

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Dwight Angelo Bruzon**, Julius Kim Tiongson***, Giovanni Tapang** and Imee Su Martinez*
Institute of Chemistry*
National Institute of Physics**
Natural Sciences Research Institute***
College of Science
UP Diliman

Electroreduction and Solubility of CO2 in Methoxy- and Nitrile-Functionalized Imidazolium (FAP) Ionic Liquids. Journal of Applied Electrochemistry, 47 (11): 1251–1260, November 2017.

The current realities of climate change, and global warming have led to various campaigns in the opposite direction, which is towards a sustainable green economy. One of the routes available, which can be taken to contribute to this cause is to mitigate anthropogenic carbon emissions. Our research group worked on novel absorbent materials, which can capture carbon dioxide in industrial stacks. These types of absorbents are ionic liquids or charged particles in the liquid state. Our studies have indicated that the novel ionic liquids developed in our laboratory, which are called FAP ionic liquids are able to dissolve CO2 better than other commercially-available ionic liquids. In addition, the functionalized ionic liquids, might be quite useful in CO2 conversion technologies because of their catalytic properties in lowering the energy input requirement for converting CO2 to other products such as hydrocarbons and alcohols, which can be used for fuels and industry.

Link to the article: https://link.springer.com/content/pdf/10.1007/s10800-017-1117-7.pdf
Impact Factor: (2016/2017) 2.235

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