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Research Center for Natural and Applied Sciences
Research Center for Natural and Applied Sciences
The UST Research Center for the Natural Sciences and Applied Sciences (RCNAS) functions as the Science and Technology research arm of the University. It brings together researchers of various disciplines namely, biology, chemistry, biochemistry, microbiology, physics, engineering, pharmacy, and food technology – all working towards the objective of contributing to an improved quality of life and sustained viability of the environment.
Vision & Mission
Vision & Mission
The Research Center for the Natural & Applied Sciences
- promotes and facilitates the involvement of faculty members in the advancement, dissemination, and utilization of knowledge in the field of science and technology for the improvement of society and the environment;
- establishes linkages with other institutions and fosters a free flow of knowledge to and from other sectors of the local and global community.
The Research Center for the Natural & Applied Sciences envisions itself
- as a community committed to a culture of excellence in research in the field of science and technology, and to the Christian aspirations of the University of Santo Tomas,
- highly productive and globally competitive in its scholarly endeavors, and
- deeply motivated to contribute significantly to national development.
The ACTA MANILANA is the official publication of the Research Center for the Natural and Applied Sciences of the University of Santo Tomas. It is a multidisciplinary journal dedicated to cover research and development in all areas of the natural and applied sciences. It features research papers, short communications and review papers which have been peer-evaluated and recommended for publication.
Advanced and Nano Materials
New and nanostructured materials are developed and characterized for electrochemical energy conversion and storage management devices. The development of fuel cells with nanostructured catalyst allows the efficient conversion of chemical energy to electrical energy for possible applications in electronic devices and transportation. The development of supercapacitors with new electrode materials like conducting polymers and metal oxides with carbon support materials allows the storage of large amount of energy and discharge it quickly. Phase change materials (PCM) which are energy storage media are used as thermal storage devices for cooling or heating load management and augments the utilization of renewable but intermittent energy sources.
New polymers are developed and characterized for controlled drug delivery system that allow the prevention of drug toxicity and maximizes drug therapeutic effects.
Biodiversity, Ecology, Systematics, and Taxonomy (BEST)
The research program involves molecular systematics which complements the classical approaches to plant taxonomy; studies the history, distribution patterns of flora and fauna and provides mechanisms to evolution. The research thrust involves the discovery of new, rare and endemic species which in turn provides the program for conservation, protection and propagation of these species.
Chemical Sensors and Biosensors
The research program develops innovative analytical and sensing devices (i.e. optical, piezoelectric, chemoresistive and electrochemical) for food safety, environment, and health. This program includes the development of sensor materials for detection of mercury and volatile organic constituents (VOCs), sensors for fruit ripeness, coffee and rice varieties, mints and flavors.
Prof. Jose Jr. H. Bergantin, PhD
Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry
Mathematics and Theoretical Physics
The research program deals with the use of mathematical analysis and multi-objective programming to solve problems related to life contingencies. Computational methods are used to generate new materials, such as nanoparticles and crystal structures with complex atom arrangement, and to determine entropies from atom trajectories of molecular dynamic simulations.
Molecular Diagnostics and Therapeutics
The research program detects diseases based on DNA/RNA sequence techniques. A continuing interest is on allergy and cancer detection susceptibility and viruses detection and characterization, development and improvement of diagnostic kits for the early detection of viral infection in shrimps, cancer and allergy. The current research interests include the determination of atmospheric allergenic pollen, characterization of allergens from house dust mites, and White Spot Syndrome Virus.
Asst. Prof. Minerva L. Daya, PhD
Doctor of Philosophy in Medical Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Natural Products, Pharmaceuticals, and Nutraceuticals
Isolation and identification of chemical constituents from plants and microorganisms are undertaken for possible applications for therapeutic and prophylactic purposes. Biological properties of constituents determined by specific bioassays include anti-infective, anti-inflammatory, anticancer, anti-diabetic and smooth muscle modulating effects.
Process Design, Intelligent and Embedded Systems, and Automation
The research program includes food engineering, biomedical engineering, and electronics and systems operations.
Pure and Applied Microbiology
The research program studies the biodiversity of fungal endophytes, molecular detection of mycobacteria and bacteriophages. The current interest investigates the fungal endophytes as source of potential bioactives for therapeutics and the development of bacteriophages as targeted therapeutic agents.
Ms. Niña Jasmin E. Caisido, Chemist
Ms. Junee Mari Clare S. Linsangan, Chemist
Ms. Lorelein M. Daza, Office Clerk
Ms. Eligia Gudelia R. Jimenez, Office Clerk
Ms. Marie Ginger A. Garay, Office Clerk
Mr. Marcelo A. Gazo, Utility Clerk
Mr. Francisco A. Arcangel, Janitor
The UST Research Center, better known as the Research Center for the Natural Sciences (RCNS), was conceived during the 350th Anniversary of the University and was confirmed on 31 March 1962 when its rules and regulations were approved by the Economic Council.
The Research Center’s main purpose was to give research opportunities to the faculty members of the University in an attempt to reinforce teaching capabilities with their research experience. Two major areas of exploration were initially considered, the Cultural Sciences and the Experimental Sciences. The only existing criterion for choice was “social significance.”
After years of operation, the Research Council realized that resources would be better maximized by focusing on projects under the umbrella of the Natural Sciences. So in 1986, with the approval of the Rector, the Center was renamed as the UST Research Center for the Natural Sciences. This Center operates independently from the other research entities of the university which have been set to cater to the other disciplines. To be able to bring the outputs of researches to the community and to the market for possible utilization and application, the University renamed it as Research Center for the Natural and Applied Sciences (RCNAS) in 2009.
RCNAS through five decades of existence. The productivity of the researchers in the various disciplines, the recognitions accorded the Center and research awards received for exemplary research from external agencies, both local and international, are the strengths of the Center that sustained it through the years. The strong ties the Center bridged among the local, national, and international partners marked the global acceptability of the Research Center and the researchers. The research grants received for the conduct of disciplined research in specific areas and patents awarded from products of research are the measures of trust and recognition the Center has from the local and international communities and Granting bodies.
Professor Thomas Edison E. dela Cruz, Dr. rer. nat., a
Assoc. Prof. Agnes L. Castillo, PhD, a faculty member of