Philippine Genome Center explores more linkage opportunities with foreign experts

The Philippine Genome Center (PGC), a genomics-focused multidisciplinary research unit of UP under the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs, continues to attract high-caliber researchers with international expertise and experience. This time, it is exploring potential collaboration with molecular genetics expert Dr. Gerard Pals. 

Pals visited the PGC yesterday, March 28th, to see its core facilities and to talk about setting up assays for clinical testing, interpreting genetic testing services, and variant interpretations. He also met with Dr. Cynthia Saloma, PGC executive director; Dr. Raul Destura, PGC health program director; and Dr. Alexander Young, PGC research professor, to discuss the center’s readiness for genetic testing services. 

PGC director Dr. Cynthia Saloma, Dr. Gerard Pals, Vice President for Academic Affairs Ma. Cynthia Rose Banzon Bautista, and Dr. Eva Maria Cutiongco-dela Paz, director of the UP National Institutes of Health, during the courtesy visit at the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs

Pals was a professor in molecular genetics at Wayne State University and consulting scientist at Henry Ford Hospital. He was responsible for the establishment of DNA and protein diagnostics at VU University Medical Center in Amsterdam. In 1997, Pals became the head of the newly instituted Division DNA and Protein Diagnostics, a national and international reference center for the diagnostics and research of inherited cancer susceptibility, connective tissue disorders, lung disease and other inherited diseases. From 2007 until his retirement in 2016, he headed the Center for Connective Tissue Research which offers diagnostic testing, performs research in inherited connective tissue disorders and provides functional testing (tissue-culture based) for primary ciliary dyskinesia. At present, he is a visiting professor at Universitas Gadjah Mada and Universitas Diponegro in Indonesia.

PGC collaborates with foreign experts to further develop its research programs and strengthen education through training, seminars and workshops.