IPA Recipients for January 2020

Bing Baltazar C. Brillo1, Hadji C. Jalotjot2, Agnes C. Rola1
1Institute for Governance and Rural Development, College of Public Affairs
and Development
(UP Los Baños)
2Center for Strategic Planning and Policy Studies, College of Public Affairs
and Development
(UP Los Baños)

Impact on Income and Livelihood of Fisheries Workers: Closed Fishing Season Policy for Sardines in Zamboanga Peninsula, Philippines, Journal of Coastal Conservation, 23(6): 1057-1067, 2019

The closed fishing season policy for sardines in the Zamboanga Peninsula is intended to conserve the sardine species and sustain long-term operations for the sardine industry in the region. As the fishing regulation entails work suspension, it could inevitably pose serious repercussion on the fisheries workers who are highly dependent on sardine production for livelihood. This study assesses the impact of the three-month fishing ban on the income and livelihood of the fisheries workers. Utilizing a survey research design, the article shows that income loss as the first and immediate consequence following the implementation of the policy in 2011. This is consequential to the economic well-being of the affected fisheries workers, especially to those among low-income households. While income loss seems to cast a shadow over the favourability of the fishing regulation, the fisheries workers still managed to alleviate the impact by obtaining a replacement job or substitute livelihood; being rehired by the canning factories and bottling companies after the fishing ban; having multiple sources of income, and staying in the workforce for scaled-down operations in the sardine processing companies. These factors mitigate income loss, translate to a guaranteed re-employment, and offer some security to the fisheries workers and their households during the closed fishing season.

Significance:
A conservation area in the coastal waters around Zamboanga Peninsula was established in 2011. Under the policy, there will be a closed fishing season for sardines and other related species for three months within a 12-month. The policy limited access to the livelihood of various stakeholders. Serious concern was raised on the possible effect on the affected stakeholders especially those in the fishing and sardine processing industry. This study assessed the impact of the closed fishing season policy on fisheries workers, specifically those in canneries. By assessing the impacts of fisheries policy, the study was able to determine the effect of the policy on income and livelihood of the workers and also identify possible policy actions to mitigate the adverse policy impacts.

Link to the article: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11852-019-00713-y
Impact factor: (2018/2019) 1.264


Jamie R. Chua1 and Albert Jr. B. Albay1
1Department of Medicine, College of Medicine (UP Manila)

Body Composition of Filipino Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Patients in Relation to Their Lung Function, Exercise Capacity and Quality of Life, International Journal of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, 14: 2759-2765, 2019

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is a disease caused by excessive smoking or exposure to harmful smoke that damages the lungs and airways. Many studies showed that COPD creates systemic inflammation which affects other organs such as the muscles, heart, brain; thus, we often see COPD patients that were undernourished and with other conditions (hypertension, coronary artery disease). Our study intends to know how COPD patients’ body mass (muscle mass) can affect their lung symptoms, function, muscle strength and exercise performance. Our study recruited 41 Filipino COPD patients. After consent, they were interviewed, asked to answer questionnaires, perform several exercises, and underwent body composition analysis. We divide them according to the low and normal muscle mass (fat-free mass index). Our study showed that 32% of them are underweight, those with low muscle mass have weaker lung strength, lower lung function, weaker upper arm muscle strength. However, exercise measurements and lung symptoms were the same for both groups.

The paper asserts that poverty among poor, elderly women adds to their caring work which further reinforces their marginalization. The family as a social construct needs to be reexamined especially the power relations between women and men that disadvantage women in terms of the benefits and costs of care work.

Significance:
To determine how body composition (muscle mass) of Filipino COPD patients can affect COPD-related clinical variables such as lung function, exercise capacity, muscle strength, etc. so that accurate nutritional assessment and management shall be advocated by physicians.

Link to the article: https://www.dovepress.com/articles.php?article_id=50171
Impact factor: (2018/2019) 3.274


Pablito M. Magdalita1 and Alangelico O. San Pascual1
1Institute of Crop Science, College of Agriculture and Food Science (UP Los Baños)

Somatic Embryogenesis, Regeneration, Phenotypic and Cytological Evaluation of Selected Philippine Papaya (Carica papaya L.) Genotypes, Philippine Journal of Crop Science, 44(3): 20-30, 2019

This paper presents the somatic embryogenesis and production of artificial seeds of different Philippine papaya genotypes, its regeneration and the results of phenotypic and cytological evaluation of somatic embryogenesis derived Papaya plants.

This study shows successful production of multiple artificial seeds (embryos) using only one embryo using somatic embryogenesis in vitro. The study also investigated on the fruit and tree characters of plants derived from somatic embryogenesis which were planted in the field. Cytological evaluation of trees were also done to check for somaclonal variations and changes that have been caused by in vitro culture.

This protocol shows promising results as to how to mass produce Papaya especially those from the Philippines using only one embryo. This study also proved low somaclonal variation on the plants derived from somatic embryogenesis as verified by phenotypic and cytological evaluation.

Significance:
The Paper shows the production of artificial seeds using somatic embryo induced from zygotic embryos of Philippine Papaya genotypes. The paper showed a rapid increase in the production of artificial seeds to increase plant production in vitro. Selected lines showed promising performance in terms of somatic embryos produced and full plant produced. Also, the study explored the different exposure techniques of the apical dome to somatic embryogenesis and found that complete exposure of apical dome promotes somatic embryogenesis. In addition, squashing also promoted somatic embryogenesis.

The peak of regeneration and germination of secondary somatic embryos were observed 7-8 months after initial explanting. Field planting confirmed that fruiting habits of somatic embryogenesis derived plants and those seed derived are uniforms.

However, one inbred line 4172, a typical hermaphrodite line produced sexually ambivalent males as this can be a form of somaclonal, variation, only a minimal level was observed. SAM had chromosomal aberrations but despite these abnormalities, pollen viability and germination is high indicating fertility

Link to the article: https://www.cabdirect.org/cabdirect/abstract/20203113780
Impact factor: (2018/2019) 0.135


Allen L. Nazareno
Institute of Mathematical Sciences and Physics
College of Arts and Sciences
UP Los Baños

Linear Conjugacy of Chemical Kinetic Systems, Mathematical Biosciences and Engineering, 16(6): 8322-8355, 2019

Chemical reaction network corresponding to the R. Schimtz’s pre-industrial carbon cycle model

The graphs of the trajectories for the original carbon cycle model and sparse linearly conjugate realization

In this study, we developed an algorithm that can be used to establish linear conjugacy between two chemical kinetic systems. Linear conjugacy is a property that takes the flow of one system to the other via a linear transformation. This concept can be used primarily to analyze the behavior of a system. The algorithm is divided into two major procedures: 1) transforming a given system into another system (a complex factorizable) and 2) implementing an optimization process to find a linearly conjugate realization of the transformed system.

Significance:
This research work can be generally used to model the behavior of chemical and biological systems. Also, this study can be used by other researchers to develop further the chemical reaction network theory.

Link to the article: https://www.aimspress.com/fileOther/PDF/MBE/mbe-16-06-421.pdf
Impact factor: (2018/2019) 1.313


Darwin B. Putungan
Institute of Mathematical Sciences and Physics
College of Arts and Sciences
UP Los Baños

First-principles Investigation of the Hydrogen Evolution Reaction on Different Surfaces of Pyrites MnS2, FeS2, CoS2, NiS2, Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics, 21: 21561-21567, 2019

The whole world currently relies on the use of fossil fuels in producing energy. Energy is very indispensable, as everything can be traced back to it, whether it’s about economics, politics and the environment. Burning fossil fuels releases greenhouse gases, in particular CO2, that is the main culprit behind global warming and subsequently climate change. To alleviate these concerns, alternative ways of producing energy must be considered, and the best possible alternative to fossil fuel is hydrogen. Hydrogen as an energy carrier does not produce any emissions, thus it is considered as clean. If used in a fuel cell, the only outputs are energy and water.

In this work, we theoretically investigated the hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) on those XRD observed (100), (110), (111), and (210) surfaces of pyrite structure CoS2 . The random structure searching method was employed in this work to thoroughly and less-biased identify the active sites for each considered surface. We calculated the free energy of hydrogen adsorption and found that (110) and (210) surfaces are more active than conventionally assumed (100) facet. While the lowest energy active site on the (100) and (210) surface is the five-coordinated transition metal site that is commonly seen in other HER catalysts, the lowest energy active site on the (110) surface is the two-coordinated S site, which is a S tetrahedron with two corners missing. Besides those lowest energy active sites, both (110) and (210) have more than one species of active sites on the surface, including not fully coordinated transition metals and sulfur. We further explored the reaction for MnS2, FeS2, and NiS2 and analyzed the density of states. Our results showed both CoS2 and NiS2 (110) and (210) surface are catalytically reactive for HER

Significance:
Energy concerns will be going to rise in the years to come, and as such, it is paramount to study materials that could be utilized in generating clean and renewable energy. One such example is hydrogen, and the most renewable way of getting it is by splitting water into its oxygen and hydrogen components. Hydrogen gas can then be produced by using an appropriate catalyst material, such as transition metal pyrites. In this work, we probed the different surfaces of CoS2, MnS2, FeS2 and NiS2 for hydrogen evolution reaction using density functional theory calculations. Our results are of significance to experimentalists as these could serve as a guide in the fabrication and cleaving of appropriate surface for hydrogen evolution.

Link to the article: https://pubs.rsc.org/en/content/articlelanding/2019/cp/c9cp03893k/unauth#!divAbstract
Impact factor: (2018/2019) 3.567