Every year, the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) goes around the different regions to showcase notable outputs from research and development. In the recently concluded Caraga Regional Science and Technology Week in Butuan on 5-8 September, 2018, DOST Secretary Fortunato de la Peña presented 15 breakthrough technologies from the different DOST agencies.
Three out of the 15 R&D programs and projects cited by the Secretary were supported and/or implemented by the of the Philippine Council for Health Research and Development are as follows:
1. Standardized and Clinically-tested Herbal Medicine
Tuklas Lunas Program
One of the health research and development priorities under the Harmonized National Research and Development Agenda (HNRDA) and the National Unified Health Research Agenda (NUHRA) 2017-2022, Tuklas Lunas or the Philippine Drug Discovery and Development Program aims to develop standardized herbal drugs from the country's marine and terrestrial resources.Successful outputs of the program include the commercialization of lagundi tablets for cough and sambong as anti-urolithasis or for treating kidney stones. The program also aims to establish Tuklas Lunas Development Centers (TLDCs), which will serve as screening and extraction centers in Higher Education Institutes (HEIs).
An animal vaccine developed by the University of the Philippines Manila to protect housepets and livestock from the Leptospira bacteria transmitted by rats. LeptoVax aims to address and mitigate outbreaks of leptospirosis in the country. While trials are still not fully complete, the developers are looking forward to test the vaccine to larger animals like carabaos and dogs, and also be able to eventually produce a vaccine that can be used in humans.
2. Medical Implants
A total knee replacement system developed for Asian and Filipino body structure, the axis knee system provides a more affordable knee replacement system which uses a novel instrument to ensure correct knee alignment. Manufactured locally by Orthopaedic International Inc., the patented instrument and surgical technique allows general orthopedic surgeons to perform the procedure accurately even without the use of x-rays.
3. Diagnostic Kits
Developed by the Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, National Institutes of Health, University of the Philippines Manila, the Biotek-M Dengue Aqua Kit is a confirmatory test for dengue that allows faster results while remaining affordable compared to other Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) tests. The development of Biotek-M also resulted in the University of the Philippines' first spin-off company, Manila HealthTek Inc., which now manufactures and distributes the devices commercially.
Aside from three PCHRD-initiated and supported breakthroughs, the Secretary also presented biofertilizers and plant growth enhancers, protein rich copra meal, agriculture and aquaculture productivity technologies, native livestock purelines technology, educational tools, supplementary foods and ready-to-eat foods for disaster victims, water treatment materials, among others.
In closing, the Secretary highlighted the significance of technology transfer and adoption of these technologies in the country. He encouraged different sectors in the region to work together in the spirit of cooperation for collective prosperity.
The Caraga Regional Science and Technology Week is part of the National Science Technology Week Celebrations which aims to bring the Department's technologies, programs, and services to the regions. The event also featured project visits including the Eel Farm in Cabadbaran City, Agusan del Norte, Hillsview and VPO Enterprises in Trento and Rosario, Agusal del Sur.
For more information on other upcoming RSTW celebrations, please visit http://nstw.dost.gov.ph/