LOS BAÑOS, Laguna – The Southeast Asian University Consortium for Graduate Education in Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC) recently awarded the UC Seed Fund for Collaborative Research to three (3) initial recipients for the first quarter of 2020.
Dr. Muhammad Heikal bin Ismail, Senior Lecturer at the Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM), is collaborating with Dr. Ngadisih, Dr. Joko Nugroho W.K., Dr. Bambang Suwignyo, and Dr. Hatma Suryatmojo, from Universitas Gadjah Mada (UGM), for the project “Investigating the effect of food and agricultural waste on the quality of biogas and bio-fertilizer”. The project aims to contribute to the framework of sustainable food safety management approach and food security strategies for both institutions. The project is also an offshoot of the 1st UC Faculty Forum held at the University of the Philippines Los Baños on 23-24 July 2019.
Dr. Francis M.C. Sigit Setyabundi, Lecturer at the Department of Food and Agriculture Product Technology, UGM, is also collaborating with Dr. Warapa Mahakarnchanakul, Assistant Professor at the Department of Food Science and Technology, Kasetsart University (KU), for the project “In vitro Antagonistic Activity of Yeast Isolated from Wet Process Coffee Against Aspergillus ochraceus Growth and Ochratoxin A Production”. The project aims to isolate indigenous yeast from wet coffee that has antagonist interactions with A. ochraceus and characterize its growth profile.
Lastly, Dr. Ahmad Faizal Abdull Razis, Associate Professor at the Faculty of Food Science and Technology and Head of the Laboratory of Molecular Biomedicine, Institute of Bioscience, UPM, was awarded the seed fund for his collaboration with Dr. Fatchiya, Professor at the Department of Biology and Director of the BioSains Institute, Universitas Brawijaya (UB), for the project “Authenticating chicken breeds based on fatty acid profiles, bioactive components, and whole genome sequencing”. The project aims to develop a portable biosensor for chicken authentication based on variations in trait as well as genetic variant within species of different chicken breeds.
The UC Seed Fund for Collaborative Research is awarded to research studies in line with the UC’s strategic priorities such as sustainable management of natural resource systems, food and agriculture policy, biotechnology in agriculture, food and health, information and communication technology, bioinformatics, and data management in agriculture. The planned research should also be conducted in partnership with the faculty of at least two member universities of the UC. More seed fund grants shall be awarded further this year to applicants who will pass UC’s research proposal evaluation.