ALEJANDRO, Grecebio Jonathan D.

Dr. Grecebio Jonathan D. Alejandro is a Professor V / Full Professor at the College of Science and currently the Director of the Office for Graduate Research, Graduate School, University of Santo Tomas (UST).

He finished his M.Sc. in Biological Science at the University of Santo Tomas, Magna Cum Laude, in 1999 and doctoral degree (Dr.rer.nat.) in Plant Molecular Systematics and Evolution from the University of Bayreuth, Bavaria, Germany, Magna Cum Laude, in 2005 through the Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst (DAAD) Doctoral Fellowship.

Dr. Alejandro further strengthened his research endeavors when he was awarded the prestigious European fellowship, the Alexander von Humboldt (AvH) Postdoctoral Fellowship for two years (2009-2010). During his Humboldt fellowship, he was a visiting scientist in the University of Bayreuth, Germany; Natural Museum of Stuttgart, Germany; and Université de Franche-Comté, Besançon, France. A Humboldt Return Fellowship was also awarded in 2011 to continue his research works back in the Philippines. He was re-invited twice (2015 and 2019) as a Visiting Scientist in Germany supported by the Humboldt Foundation.

Dr. Alejandro is recognized for his pioneering research on Plant Molecular Phylogenetics in the Philippines and discovery of novel genera and several new endemic species in Rubiaceae (coffee family), such as the Mussaenda ustii Alejandro in honor of UST, Hedyotis papafranciscoi dedicated to Pope Francis, and more notably the Mycetia dagohoyana and Discopermum reyesii which he named after in honor of the 96th Rector of the Pontifical and Royal University of Santo Tomas, Very Rev. Fr. Herminio V. Dagohoy, O.P. and the founder and first President of FEU, Dr. Nicanor Reyes Sr., respectively.

He established the Thomasian Angiosperm Phylogeny and Barcoding Group (TAPBG) in the UST – Research Center for the Natural and Applied Sciences. It puts special focus on systematics and taxonomy, molecular phylogenetics, biodiversity, DNA barcoding of medicinal plants, and collaborative studies on the phytochemistry and biological potentials of endemic Philippine plants. The TAPBG has been a major research force when it comes to documenting the rich biodiversity of Philippine Rubiaceae and medicinal plants as well as the preservation and conservation of endemic plants.

He has supervised 8 doctoral, 20 master’s, and more than 80 bachelor’s theses from 2006- 2018. He is currently mentoring 5 Ph.D., 2 M.S., and 2 undergraduate thesis writers.

Dr. Alejandro has presented over 50 papers in international fora and over 200 papers in local scientific meetings either as lectures and/or posters. As a testament to his incomparable scientific accomplishments, the TAPBG has been cited/awarded in a number of scientific fora as Best Lecture, Best Poster, Winners of Young Scientists Forum in national (e.g., ASBP, BIOTA, NAST-ASM, NRCP, PhilSAgen, PSBMB) and international conferences (e.g., AABE, ICONS, Flora Malesiana).

Recently, Dr. Alejandro received a research grant from the DOST– Philippine Council for Health, Research & Development (PCHRD) in which he is a project leader in DNA barcoding of Philippine medicinal plants. This project constitutes a pioneering genome-based authentication of Philippine medicinal plants with promising chemical and pharmacological properties. It aims to develop a Philippine Medicinal Plants DNA Barcode Database (PMPDBD). Through his efforts, the DOST-PCHRD recognized his research team in UST as Center for DNA Barcoding of Herbal Plants and Medicines.

Dr. Alejandro is also the project leader of two other projects funded by the National Research Council of the Philippines (NRCP) and CHED-PHERNet dealing with molecular phylogeny and taxonomic revisions of endemic Philippine Rubiaceae. His group utilizes both classical tools and several molecular markers from cpDNA and nrDNA to resolve problematic taxa as well as bioinformatics software in editing, aligning, and constructing phylogenetic trees.

To date, Dr. Alejandro has published more than 100 articles in national and international ISI journals. He was recently awarded the 2017 St. Antoninus of Florence Outstanding Alumnus Award (UST-Graduate School) and 2015 Gregorio Y. Zara Achievement Award last September 2015 given by the Philippine Association for the Advancement of Science (PhilAAST). He was also awarded by the DOST-NAST ASM 2015, the Outstanding Scientific Paper Award last July 9, 2015 at the Manila Hotel and the 2014 Outstanding Research and Development Award for Basic Research with the Eduardo A. Quisumbing Medal during the National Science & Technology Week (NSTW) last July 2014. He has received numerous awards including the 2006 NAST Outstanding Young Scientist in Biology (Botany), 2008 NAST Talent Search for Young Scientist, 2011 NAST Best Scientific Poster Award, 2013 Hall of Fame Award (Gawad San Lorenzo Ruiz, UST), 2012 Best Published Research in S&T (Gawad San Alberto Magno, UST); 2011 Outstanding Researcher (Gawad San Alberto Magno, UST); 2008 Best Associate Professor (Gawad Santo Tomas, 2008); 2000, 2003, 2005 Silver Series Awardee; 2005, 2008, 2012, 2014 International Publication Awards; 2012, 2014, 2017 Gold Series Awardee (Office of Research and Innovation, UST).

Dr. Alejandro actively participates in several local and international professional organizations and is currently the president of the Alexander von Humboldt Assoc. of the Philippines (AvHP) and former president of the Association of Systematic Biologists of the Philippines (ASBP), and the treasurer of the Philippine Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (PSBMB). He does several extension services/professional consultancies such as Section Editor in Phytotaxa International journal and Associate Editor in The Antoninus Journal & Philippine Journal of Systematic Biology, Reviewer in several National & International journals and DOST/DOH project proposals, Adviser and Evaluator of graduate thesis/dissertation, Consultant/ UST representative to the Philippine Plant Conservation Committee headed by the DENR – Biodiversity Management Bureau, and importantly as Leader in the advocacy of conserving Philippine endemic plants.

Updates

Alejandro, Ysrael win awards in PSBMB 2020 conference

Alejandro, Ysrael win awards in PSBMB 2020 conference

Professor Grecebio Jonathan D. Alejandro, Dr. rer. nat. and Prof.

Academic Qualifications

Research Highlights

Research Interests

Academic Qualifications

Degrees

  • Doctor of Natural Sciences (Magna cum Laude), Universität Bayreuth – Germany
  • Master of Science (Magna cum Laude), University of Santo Tomas – Manila, Philippines
  • Bachelor of Science (Academic Excellence), Far Eastern University – Manila, Philippines

Research Highlights

  • Discovery of various novel plant taxa (genus and species levels)
  • Development of Philippine Rubiaceae Interactive Database 
  • First Molecular Phylogeny of endemic genera & species of the Philippine Rubiaceae
  • Development of DNA Barcoding Database
  • Establishment of the Thomasian Angiosperm Phylogeny & Barcoding Group (TAPBG)

Research Interests

  • Systematics & Taxonomy of Philippine Flora (esp. Rubiaceae)
  • Molecular Phylogenetics (cpDNA & nrDNA)
  • DNA Barcoding of endemic and medicinal plants
  • Collaborative studies on Phytochemistry of endemic plants

Courses Handled

Major Recognitions

Professional Activities

Courses Handled

Graduate Level

  • Advance Systematics
  • Descriptive Language of Taxonomy
  • Graduate Seminar in Plant Sciences
  • Independent Research
  • Modern Tools for Biodiversity Studies w/ Laboratory
  • Molecular Phylogenetics w/ Laboratory
  • Bioinfomatics
  • Field Botany w/ Laboratory
  • Phylogeny of Land Plants
  • Thesis Proposal
  • Research Colloquium & Publication

Undergraduate Level

  • Biological Systematics
  • Biology Seminar I, II, and III
  • Botany
  • Concepts in Biological Sciences 1 and 2
  • General Zoology
  • Systematic Botany

Major Recognitions

  • Alexander von Humboldt Fellow (2009-2010)
  • 2015 Gregorio Zara Achievement Award (PhilAAST)
  • 2015 Outstanding Scientific Paper Award, National Academy of Science and Technology
  • 2014 Outstanding R&D Award for Basic Research, The Eduardo Quisumbing Medal, National Academy of Science and Technology
  • 2013 Hall of Fame Award, University of Santo Tomas
  • 2008 Talent Search for Young Scientist, National Academy of Science and Technology
  • 2006 Outstanding Young Scientist  in Biology, National Academy of Science and Technology

Professional Activities

  • President – Association of Systematic Biologists of the Philippines (ASBP) and Alexander von Humboldt Assoc. of the Philippines
  • Treasurer – Philippine Society of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology (PSBMB)
  • Section Editor – Phytotaxa International Journal
  • Associate Editor – The Antoninus Journal, UST
  • Reviewer — Taxon International Journal, Asia Life Sciences, Science Diliman Journal, Acta Manilana, Philippine Journal of Systematic Biology (PJSB), DOST-PCHRD project proposals
  • Consultant — DENR–Biodiversity Management Bureau (formerly PAWB)
  • Project Leader — DNA Barcoding for Authentication of Philippine Medicinal Plants (funded by the DOST-PCHRD)
  • Leader— Assessment & Inventory of Philippine flora in various mountains, and Biodiversity & Conservation Advocacy in collaboration with University of Antique.

Selected Publications

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