UP to work with Balik Scientist microbial genomics expert for research and training

The Philippine Genome Center (PGC) of UP will host Dr. Cheryl P. Andam, an expert on microbial genomics and Assistant Professor of Microbial Ecology at the University of New Hampshire, as Balik Scientist from July to August 2017.

Andam is set to collaborate with Dr. Arturo Lluisma of the UP Marine Science Institute on using genomics for antibiotic discovery from soil bacteria, and with Dr. Pierangeli Vital, Dr. Windell Rivera and Dr. Marie Christine Obusan of the UP Institute of Biology and Dr. Ma. Anita Bautista, program director of PGC’s DNA Sequencing & Bioinformatics Facility, on genome sequencing of representative human pathogens found in the environment.​

PGC has also scheduled the following seminars to be led by Dr. Andam: Application of genomics to understand the ecology and evolution of microbes, with focus on the unique characteristics of microbial genomes and its relevance to public health (14 July, National Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology or NIMBB), Life Underneath: the secret life of soil microbes and applications to health and agriculture (21 July 21, UP Los Baños), Horizontal gene transfer, in conjunction with the Microbiology Program of the UP Institute of Biology (28 July, NIMBB), and Large-scale genome sequencing methods and analyses of bacteria and archaea (4 August, NIMBB).

During her stay, the Balik Scientist will welcome undergraduate and graduate student advisees with thesis topics related to her field of expertise. Her research interests include genomics, ecology and the evolution of microbes.

Andam received her BS in Forestry from UP Los Baños and her MS in Biology from Binghamton University, State University of New York. She completed her PhD in Microbiology at the University of Connecticut and became postdoctoral associate at Cornell University and postdoctoral research fellow at Harvard University.

She is the third Balik Scientist to be hosted by PGC.

The Balik Scientist Program is implemented by the Department of Science and Technology to “encourage highly-trained overseas Filipino scientists and technologists, experts and professionals to return to the Philippines and share their expertise for the acceleration of the scientific, agro-industrial and economic development of the country.”

(Article and image by the Philippine Genome Center. Text edited by ARM)