By Estrella Z. Gallardo
The Department of Science and Technology-Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (DOST-PCAARRD) held an inception meeting for the launching of three R&D projects funded by DOST under the Grants-inAid (GIA) Program.
These projects are titled, Saving the Heirloom corn varieties of Kalinga Province; Purple Yam (Dioscorea alata Linn.) Quality Planting Material Production through Aeroponics; and Improvement of ‘Carabao’ Mango Production and Fruit Quality through Quantitative Trait Loci (QTL) Identification for Scab and Stem-end Rot Resistance by Genome Wide Association Studies (GWAS).
The three projects will be monitored by the Special Projects Division (SPD) of DOST and the Crops Research Division (CRD) of DOST-PCAARRD until completion in 2022.
DOST-PCAARRD Acting Executive Director Dr. Reynaldo V. Ebora said that inception meeting was the best opportunity for DOST, PCAARRD, and the project teams to discuss and finalize the expected deliverables.
DOST-PCAARRD Acting Executive Deputy Director for R&D Dr. Edwin C. Villar emphasized in his message the significance of the projects. He said that the efforts on mango and purple yam would help improve the country’s competitiveness while the heirloom corn project in the Kalinga province would play an important role in preserving the Philippine culture. He also mentioned DOST and PCAARRD’s effort in giving importance to non-traditional partners such as the Kalinga State University (KSU).
Mr. Rex S. Langngag, Project Leader of the heirloom corn project, appreciated his and KSU’s involvement in the first R&D project of DOST in the Kalinga Province. The said project aims to conserve heirloom purple corn varieties through community seedbanking.
On the other hand, the BSU project team led by Ms. Cynthia G. Kiswa, with collaborators from the Bohol Island State University (BISU) and the Visayas State University (VSU), will utilize the aeroponics and tissue-culture technologies to mass produce quality planting materials (QPM) of four purple yam or ubi varieties.
The mango project aims to address losses due to scab and stem-end rot diseases of mango by generating molecular markers associated with resistance for the two diseases.
DOST-PCAARRD Acting Executive Director Dr. Reynaldo V. Ebora added that the inception meeting was the best opportunity for DOST, PCAARRD, and the project teams to discuss and finalize the expected deliverables. In closing, he emphasized that the letters ‘P’ and ‘C’ in PCAARRD also meant partnership and collaboration. He expected the partners to observe a two-way relationship between the funding and implementing institutions to ensure the success of the project. (MegaManila Science Journalists)