University of the Philippines Los Baños
Thursday, 13 July 2017 18:13

NCPC hosts Biomathematics Seminar

A mathematician and a physicist among plant scientists.

This was the scene during the National Crop Protection Center’s (NCPC) special seminar on biomathematics on May 23 at the NCPC Auditorium, where two faculty members from the Institute of Mathematical Sciences and Physics (IMSP) discussed how they have been integrating mathematical sciences with biological sciences.

This could also be a scenario should IMSP and NCPC pursue further research collaboration, particularly in applying the principles of mathematics and physics to solving problems in crop protection.

During the seminar, Dr. Jomar F. Rabajante, faculty member at the IMSP talked about “Systems approach in predictive ecology.” He explained the application of mathematics in biology, such as determining the behaviour of bees and modeling parasitism and diseases. Meanwhile, Dr. Chrysline Margus N. Piñol, faculty member and director of IMSP, delivered the lecture “A physicist’s recipe for population change.” She discussed the use of a model to predict the ageing of a population.

According to Dr. Susan May F. Calumpang, Scientist I and assistant to the vice chancellor for research and extension, the seminar was a great opportunity for NCPC researchers to be informed on the application of biomathematics in pest management. She expressed hopes that NCPC will be able to integrate biomathematics in their research endeavours in collaboration with the two speakers.

Melvin D. Ebuenga, research coordinator of NCPC, cited possible areas of collaboration with Dr. Rabajante and Dr. Piñol in crop protection. Likewise, Cristina M. Bajet, Scientist I, affirmed that predictive models can be done to detect pesticide residue degradation. Mario V. Navasero, Scientist I at the NCPC, said that it can be a tool to discover the migration and spatial analysis of pest occurrence.

After the seminar, the NCPC scientists discussed with Dr. Rabajante and Dr. Piñol the possible collaborative projects that the two academic units could pursue together. (Melissa P. Montecalvo and Dr. Jomar F. Rabajante)