UST, UP Manila science students develop brain-computer, cancer treatment to aid patients

UP Manila medical aids
Two young scientists from leading Philippine educational institutions bagged top prizes at the 30th BPI-DoST Science Awards. (From left) Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) Foundation Executive Director Maricris San Diego, Best in Innovation awardees Christian Badua of the University of the Philippines Manila and Jay Patrick Nieles, and DoST-Science Education Institute Deputy Director Albert Mariño. Credits to DoST.

Science students from the University of Santo Tomas (UST) and University of the Philippines (UP) Manila developed medical aids for patients and won top science prizes for their research.

University of Santo Tomas student Jay Patrick Nieles won the coveted Project of the Year prize for developing a brain-computer that aids locked-in syndrome (LIS) patients at the 30th Science Awards given by the Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) Foundation and Department of Science and Technology (DoST).

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Nieles, a BS Electronics Engineering student, was also co-winner of the Best in Innovation Award for the same study. Nieles’ research explored helping locked-in syndrome (LIS) patients communicate through a brain-computer typing interface that uses the visual imagination of shapes and sizes.

Christian Badua from the University of the Philippines (UP) Manila also won the Best in Innovation Award for his study on how probiotics can be used to treat colon cancer.

The UST and UP Manila science students’ researches were among the thirty promising entries shortlisted for the science awards given last August 2 at the Alphaland City Club in Makati City.

The Best in Innovation Award came with Php20,000 cash prize and a trophy. The Project of Year Award came with an additional Php25,000 and a trophy.

Aside from Nieles and Badua, the other 8 students who made it to the Top Ten and were awarded an additional Php15,000 cash and certificate each were: Alex Retona (AdMU), Chester Tantoco (UP Los Baños), Dewey Sia (AdDU), Ryan Suplito, (UP Los Baños), Jeremie Pearl Cruz, (UP Diliman), Jody AdrieneDong-E (St. Louis University-Baguio), Marc Anthony Reyes (Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan) and Marvin Serge (Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan).

Students who participated came from eleven universities, namely the Ateneo de Manila University (AdMU), Ateneo de Davao (AdDU), De La Salle University-Manila, Mindanao State University-Iligan Institute of Technology, St. Louis University-Baguio, UP Diliman, UP Manila, UP Los Baños, University of San Carlos, University of Santo Tomas (UST) and Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan. Each participant received Php10,000 cash and a medal.

The 30th Science Awards is a project organized by the Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) Foundation in partnership with the Department of Science and Technology (DoST) for outstanding students from all over the Philippines.

“Through these awards, we hope to inspire more Filipino students to pursue scientific researches and innovations that contribute to building a stronger and more sustainable future for all of us,” BPI Foundation Executive Director Maricris San Diego said in the media release sent to Good News Pilipinas.

DOST-SEI Director Dr. Josette Biyo congratulated the students and the BPI Foundation for another successful year of the Science Awards.

“The works of our young scientists and engineers are truly worthy of recognition and we’re grateful that BPI is with us in urging and inspiring students to excel in science and technology. Three decades of Science Awards is a feat and a testament to BPI’s commitment to strengthen the role of scientific research in national development. Rest assured, DOST will always be supportive of this endeavor,” Dr. Biyo said.

The country’s science students have gained international recognition for their works including that of Angeles City High School students winning awards at the 2019 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) held in Arizona, USA, where Camarines Sur students won top honors in the 2018 edition of the ISEF held in Pennsylvania.

SEND congratulations in the comments below for these outstanding science students and the organizers of the 30th Science Awards for showcasing innovation in Philippine education!

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Angie is a self-confessed reformed news critic who vows she has finally found infinite value in delivering the good news. She teaches students of all ages how to make the important interesting for audiences across media platforms.