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ICYMI: Science and technology updates from March 31 to April 6, 2019.

In just 3 months, PH measles cases jump to almost 27,000

According to statistics from the Department of Health (DOH) Epidemiology Bureau, the first three months of 2019 brought 26,956 cases of measles — a massive increase from the 5,605 cases recorded during the same period last year. There were also 381 deaths from January to March 2019, nearly eight times as many as the 51 deaths recorded during the same three months of 2018. Almost 60 percent of this year’s cases involved children who were not yet vaccinated. The agency attributed the drop in measles immunization to the recent Dengvaxia controversy. Read the full story.

Taguig museum serves as new home of Pinoy space history

diwata-1, diwata-2
(Image: The Mind Museum)

The Mind Museum’s newest space exhibits will give Diwata-1, Diwata-2, and Maya-1 some much-deserved time in the spotlight. Permanent exhibits at the Universe Gallery, as well as a spot in the museum’s Space Adventure Travelling Exhibition, will showcase the different space technology projects spearheaded by the Department of Science and Technology (DOST). The Space Adventure exhibition will occupy the museum’s Canopy Plaza until April 21, 2019, after which it will travel to different sites in the Philippines.

DOST-TAPI, DOST-PCAARRD highlight AANR technologies in Ilocos

(Image: DOST-STII)

The Technology Application and Promotion Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST-TAPI) recently facilitated the promotion of agriculture, aquatic, and natural resources (AANR) technologies in the Ilocos region, via tech demonstrations and fora focusing on agriculture-related innovations.

Last March 29, DOST-TAPI partnered up with DOST’s Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (DOST-PCAARRD) to showcase new agri-technologies at the North Stellar Hotel and Events Place in Batac, Ilocos Norte. Technology transfer and adoption requirements and procedures were also discussed during the demonstration, to the delight of interested agriculture investors.

The event showcased new AANR technologies: pelletizing machine for goat feeds, pellet feeds for goats, loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) kit for the swine porcine epidemic diarrhea (PED) virus from the Central Luzon State University (CLSU), and chevon products in retort pouch of Don Mariano Marcos Memorial State University (DMMMSU).

UP students bag international prize for “eco-friendly” concrete

A team of civil engineering students from the University of the Philippines (UP) recently won the top prize at an international competition for developing a new type of environment-friendly cement using recycled and locally sourced materials. Angelica Anne Munar, Ryan Christopher Ramelo, Paulo Santos and Alexis Declaro dominated the eco-concrete competition held last March 24 by the American Concrete Institute (ACI) in Canada. Read the full story.

World Bank to aid Philippines in marine plastic waste reduction

The World Bank Group expressed its readiness to help the Philippines in the fight against marine plastic waste. It intends to do so by providing critical financial support to waste reduction initiatives, as well as by formulating new policies on marine waste management. Read the full story.

Science says smoking makes cancer treatment costlier

From Medical Xpress:

A study released today in JAMA Network Open reported that smoking after a cancer diagnosis is associated with substantial additional costs of cancer treatment.

Hollings Cancer Center researcher Graham Warren, M.D., Ph.D., says the study establishes a model to estimate the economic burden of smoking on cancer treatment, which is information that can benefit patients as well as health care providers.

“These data estimate that smoking could result in $3.4 billion in additional cancer treatment costs nationally if patients continue to smoke after being diagnosed with cancer,” says Warren, lead author on the study and professor and vice chairman for Research in Radiation Oncology at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC).

Read the full story.

These threads change color upon detecting gases

From Science Daily

Scientists have developed a novel fabrication method to create dyed threads that change color when they detect a variety of gases. Woven into clothing, smart, gas-detecting threads could provide a reusable, washable, and affordable safety asset in medical, workplace, military and rescue environments. The study describes the fabrication method and its ability to extend to a wide range of dyes and detection of complex gas mixtures.

Read the full story.

Whale, whale, whale: Four-legged cetacean roamed Peru 46.2 million years ago



Cetaceans, the group including whales and dolphins, originated in south Asia more than 50 million years ago from a small, four-legged, hoofed ancestor. Now, researchers reporting the discovery of an ancient four-legged whale—found in 42.6-million-year-old marine sediments along the coast of Peru—have new insight into whales’ evolution and their dispersal to other parts of the world. The findings are reported in the journal Current Biology on April 4.

Read the full story.

Cover photo: The Mind Museum