ICP Welcomes Bicol Chapter, Unilab Cluster

The Integrated Chemists of the Philippines (ICP) warmly welcomes two new groupings into the accredited professional organization of registered chemists and registered chemical technicians in the country: the ICP Bicol Chapter and the ICP Unilab Cluster.

The ICP Bicol Chapter was formally introduced during this year’s annual chapters’ meeting in Cebu City. The newly formed chapter is headed by its chapter president Mr Michael Montealegre, a chemistry professor at Bicol University. As discussed during the chapters’ meeting, Mr Montealegre has laid out plans to improve the presence of the chemistry profession in his area of jurisdiction such as the chemistry profession awareness campaign in different high schools and making chemical laboratories fully comply with the Chemistry Profession Act of 2015.

Meanwhile, the ICP Unilab Cluster was formally launched last June 10 at the Unilab Laboratories complex in Mandaluyong City. ICP President Dr Fabian Dayrit, ICP Treasurer Dr Lilibeth Coo, and ICP Board Member Dr Rosalinda Torres were present in welcoming the newly established cluster, which is composed of over a hundred chemists and chemical technicians, and headed by its inaugural cluster president Mr Arjay Cubos.

Once again, welcome to the ICP! Let us all work together to further enhance the state of the chemistry profession and to uplift the welfare of chemists and chemical technicians in the country!

Roselyn Usero is 2019 Outstanding Chemist

The Integrated Chemists of the Philippines (ICP), the accredited professional organization of registered chemists and registered technicians in the country, has the honor of announcing that the Outstanding Chemist of 2019, bestowed by the Professional Regulation Commission, is awarded to Ms Roselyn Usero.

Ms Usero holds a BS-Chemistry degree from the Colegio San Agustin and a master’s degree in environmental engineering from the University of St. La Salle, both in Bacolod City, Negros Occidental. She specializes in analytical chemistry, environmental engineering, industrial microbiology, aquaculture, and shrimp culture. She initially worked as a chemical analyst for numerous Bacolod-based companies and has also rendered service to her alma mater Colegio San Agustin as a part-time chemistry faculty. Presently, Ms Usero is the laboratory head and manager of the Negros Prawn Producers Cooperative Analytical and Diagnostic Laboratory (NPPCADL) and teaches courses in the MS-Fisheries program at the Northern Negros State College of Science and Technology in Sagay City, Negros Occidental. In addition, she is a sought-after technical speaker in some notable gatherings in the country such as the Philippine Shrimp Congress and the Caraga Shrimp Forum and has also participated in various local and international conferences.

Ms Usero’s expertise in analytical chemistry and shrimp culture has tremendously helped the community in the Visayas region. She has written manuals on the successful shrimp culture techniques in Negros Island (2000) and the integration of the freshwater fish tilapia to the prawn culture system (2001). From 2004 to 2014, she received accolades in her numerous studies to mitigate the lethal white spot syndrome virus affecting the shrimp population in Negros island. In 2009, she was part of a team that assessed the water quality at Mambukal Mountain Resort, a popular tourist destination in the city of Murcia, southeast of Bacolod. In 2012, she helped conduct a study on the use of indigenous microorganisms as an alternative material in analyzing the biological oxygen demand in bodies of water. In 2017, Ms Usero developed a fry quality assessment criteria for the country’s shrimp culture.

Ms Usero also made significant contributions to NPPCADL. As its manager, NPPCADL became the first and only private laboratory in the Western Visayas region duly recognized by the Department of Natural Resources’s Environmental Management Bureau; received a Laboratory of Excellence certificate from the Environment Resource Associates in Colorado, USA for achieving 100% acceptable data for environmental parameters for water and wastewater; became a licensed soils laboratory by the Bureau of Soils and Water Management; and became the first laboratory in Negros island to be given an ISO/IEC 17025 accreditation. To cater to the needs of the community, Ms Usero utilized NPPCADL to provide high-quality analytical services to individuals or groups conducting research projects and to serve as an on-the-job training site for senior high school students in Bacolod and nearby cities.

Ms Usero is the president of the ICP Bacolod Chapter since 2013. Through her utmost dedication, ICP Bacolod has prospered, manifested by a steady increase in the said chapter’s membership and the active attendance of its members during seminars and workshops that the chapter regularly organizes. She has been actively promoting the chemistry profession in secondary schools, enticing the students to choose a career in chemistry. In 2017, in partnership with the Technological University of the Philippines Visayas Campus, ICP-Bacolod spearheaded a review session for examinees of the inaugural chemical technician licensure examination, with the aim of professionalizing the employees of chemical laboratories in Negros island in response to the Chemistry Profession Act of 2015. Aside from being the lead organizer of this review session, Ms Usero also taught the analytical chemistry portion to the examinees. This review session was proven to be instrumental as it produced four of the Top 10 passers (two second-placers, one seventh-placer, one eighth-placer), and garnered an impressive 95% passing rate among those who have participated. The review session was conducted yet again in 2018, which resulted to even more licensed chemical technicians in the area.

This year’s Outstanding Chemist continues to use chemistry as a tool to build and enrich the lives of the community and the society at large. From your ICP family, congratulations Ms Roselyn Usero!

ICP Holds 2019 Chapters’ Meeting in Cebu


The Integrated Chemists of the Philippines (ICP) organized its eighth annual Chapters’ Meeting on 27 May 2019 at the Talamban campus of the University of San Carlos in Cebu, hosted by the ICP Cebu Chapter headed by its chapter president Dr. Patrick Lim. Board representatives of the different ICP chapters nationwide attended the event, where pressing concerns were addressed.

Dr. Fabian Dayrit, president of the ICP, started off the meeting with the overall update regarding the organization in his President’s Report. ICP vice president for internal affairs Dr. Glenn Alea gave an update on the latest membership profile of the organization. Concerns regarding membership were likewise taken up, such as how to improve the membership drive of the chapters.

Bulk of the concerns mentioned during the meeting was on CPD-earning events and requirements for the members of the chapters. One initiative mentioned was a collaboration between the ICP and vendor-partners to better expand the ICP’s reach. Ludivinia Avendaño, auditor of the ICP, gave insightful comments and suggestions regarding it.

After a hearty lunch, the chapters took turns in presenting each of their annual report. Events such as promotion of the chemistry profession to high school students through career talks and the holding of seminars on specific chemistry topics were organized by most of the chapters. One notable event that the Southern Mindanao and Bacolod chapters were able to organize was the review session for examinees intending to take the chemical technician licensure examination. Challenges such as low remuneration packages given to chemists and chemical technicians by their respective employers, non-compliance of certain personnel to the Chemistry Profession Act of 2015, and the absence of chemists and chemical technicians in certain areas were also stated.

ICP Board Election 2019: Call for Nominations

The term of office of three members of the ICP Board of Directors expires on 30 June 2019.  Nominations are invited for the election of the ICP Board members who will hold office starting 1 July 2019 to 30 June 2022.

Three board members — one representative each from the industry, government and academe — are to be elected. Only active regular ICP members (chemists) may be nominated.

End Term
Academe
Government
Industry
2019 Dr. Fabian Dayrit* Col. Victor Drapete* Ms. Ludivinia Avendaño*
2020 Dr. Glenn Alea Ms. Nenita Marayag Ms. Priscilla Alice Samonte
2021 Dr. Lilibeth Coo Dr. Rosalinda Torres Ms. Edna Mijares

* Terms to expire on June 30, 2019.

The elected members of the board are expected to regularly attend the meetings of the ICP and actively participate in activities geared towards achieving the objectives of the ICP as follows:

1. Support the implementation of Chemistry Law and the Code of Ethics for chemists and safeguard the professional interests of the registered chemists;

2. Make the professional chemists conscious of their serious responsibilities in helping the country develop;

3. Provide a forum to exchange ideas on the chemistry profession;

4. Cultivate discipline among the members, develop the spirit of camaraderie, and maintain occupational standards;

5. Encourage and foster chemical education;

6. Develop a continuing program of activities leading towards upgrading of standards, such as accreditation of laboratories and professional competencies.

Guidelines:

  • Only ICP members in good standing can be nominated, submit a nomination, and vote. The ICP Membership Committee shall confirm the status of nominators, nominees, and voters.
  • The nominee must confirm acceptance of nomination by signing the attached nomination form or by sending an email indicating acceptance of nomination. Members may nominate one candidate to each sector. Click here to download nomination form.
  • The winning candidate from each sector will hold office for a term of 3 years (2019 to 2022).
  • The nomination period is from May 11 to June 14, 2019. Nomination forms should be submitted by e-mail to ICPComelec@gmail.com by 5PM of June 30.
  • The list of nominees will be posted on the ICP website (http://www.icp.org.ph/) by June 18.
  • The election period will be from June 17 to 28, 2019.
  • The ICP Elections Committee (ICP COMELEC) is made up of the following: Dr. Glenn Alea (chair), Ms. Nenita Marayag, and Ms. Priscilla Alice Samonte.

Could Reused Cooking Oil Trigger Breast Cancer Spread?

This article was written by Monica Beyer and was first published on the website Medical News Today on 31 March 2019.

A recent study in mice showed that reheated cooking oil might trigger cell changes that can promote late-stage breast cancer growth.

Researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign tested “thermally abused frying oil,” which is cooking oil that has undergone reheating to high temperatures multiple times, in laboratory mice and found that it increased metastatic breast cancer growth.

The team reported these findings in the journal Cancer Prevention Research.

The scientists fed all of the lab mice a low-fat diet for a week. Then, they gave some of the mice unheated fresh soybean oil for 16 weeks while the rest ingested thermally abused oil instead.

They chose to use soybean oil because the restaurant industry commonly uses it for deep frying.

To simulate breast cancer, they injected 4T1 breast cancer cells into a tibia of each mouse. These breast cancer cells are very aggressive and have a high rate of metastasis to multiple distant sites. As a result, they often appear in the lymph nodes, liver, and lungs.

The effects of reused oil

At 20 days after the injection of the tumor cells, there was a notable difference in the rate of metastatic growth between the two groups of mice. In the mice who had eaten thermally abused oil, the metastatic growth of the tibia tumors was four times greater than that of the tumors in the mice who consumed the fresh oil.

There were also more lung metastases in the former group. Lead researcher William G. Helferich, a professor of food science and human nutrition, noted that there were twice as many lung tumors, which were also more aggressive and invasive than those in the fresh-oil group.

“I just assumed these nodules in the lungs were little clones — but they weren’t,” says Helferich. “They’d undergone transformation to become more aggressive. The metastases in the fresh-oil group were there, but they weren’t as invasive or aggressive, and the proliferation wasn’t as extensive.”

Breast cancer statistics

Breast cancer occurs when cells in the breast grow out of control and form a tumor. If the cells are capable of invading the surrounding tissue or spreading to other areas of the body, doctors deem the disease to be malignant. Breast cancer is not exclusive to women — although it is rare, it can affect men as well.

Breast cancer rates in the United States have increased by 0.4 percent a year over recent years.

Why reheated oil may be bad

The repeated reheating of cooking oil changes its composition and releases acrolein, which is a toxic and potentially carcinogenic chemical.

Restaurants and other food outlets often reuse soybean oil multiple times before replacing it with fresh oil in the frying vats.
These factors are what led the researchers to investigate whether thermally abused oil could have any effect on breast cancer growth. Although the results are preliminary, they add to a knowledge base that will grow deeper as research in this area continues.

“Many cancer biologists are trying to understand what’s happening at metastatic sites to prime them for tumor growth,” notes co-lead author and graduate student Ashley W. Oyirifi. “We’re trying to add to this conversation and help people understand that it might not be just some inherent biological mechanism but a lifestyle factor. If diet provides an opportunity to reduce breast cancer survivors’ risk, it offers them agency over their own health”, she adds.