Skip to main content


Showing posts from July, 2022

Genetics, environment, and life habits

By Noralyn Onto Dudt The advent of Molecular Biology and the Human Genome Project has dramatically increased our understanding of the mechanisms of human disease. As the underlying molecular causes for many diseases have been elucidated, it is now clear that the mechanism of a disease is influenced by genetics, environment, and life habits. For example, even though the causes of Parkinson disease are still a mystery, it is believed that about 15% of people may have a genetic mutation that puts them at risk. Head injuries or exposure to certain environmental toxins may play a role as well. Similarly, research studies indicate that 15 to 20 % of those with AMD ( age-related macular degeneration) have at least one first-degree relative ( like a sibling or parent) who suffers from it. Another example is when   people may pick up a virus or a bacteria but only a few of them   may contract a certain disease. Research shows that genetics play a role: some genes are switched off in so

PTV transmitter station to rise soon at MMSU Batac Campus

City of Batac —To keep Ilocanos informed and empowered, a PTV transmitter station will soon rise at the MMSU campus in this city. People's Television Network, Inc. (PTNI) and Mariano Marcos State University (MMSU) officials held a groundbreaking ceremony at Brgy. Quiling Sur, this city on June 14, 2022. , PTNI General Manager Ms. Katherine Chloe S. De Castro and MMSU President Shirley C. Agrupis led the program, at the 500 square-meter lot where they plan to build the PTV tower. Joining them were Ilocos Norte government officials led by Ilocos Norte Vice Governor Cecilia A. Marcos. De Castro said the PTV Ilocos Norte station, which they expect to be operational by December this year, will soon cater to over 400,000 residents in Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, Abra and Apayao. It will broadcast relevant information and updates about national and regional development projects, especially highlighting that of Ilocos Norte. “With this station, we will be bringing government informa

Reelected Manotoc vows bigger projects for Ilocos Norte

LAOAG CITY – Reelected Ilocos Norte Governor Matthew Joseph M. Manotoc vowed to continue programs he started during his first term but on a much grander scale. In his speech during the formal presentation of documents for turnover at the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, Manotoc said that while expectations are high for the province of Ilocos Norte and its new set of leaders, he sees no problem achieving their goals, especially under the incoming administration of his uncle President Ferdinand "Bongbong" R. Marcos Jr. “We have the national government on our side. So, let us capitalize on the moment. We are at the forefront of the Philippines and everybody is looking at us. Let us make our president and our province mates proud,” Manotoc told the transition team and the department heads. He said he will push for agriculture modernization, tourism investments as well as manufacturing and product processing to generate more jobs and livelihood. "There had been a lot of dela

US recognizes exemplary HIV treatment facilities at inaugural QUILTS Awards

Bulacan Medical Center’s Ronchie D. Santos and Marc Anthony Payabyab (center) receive the QUILTS Award from EpiC Country Director Teresita Marie “Bai” Bagasao, USAID Foreign Service Officer Hoang Bui, AIDS Society Philippines President Irene Fonacier-Fellizar, and USAID Office of Health Deputy Director Yolanda Oliveros. Manila —The United States government, through the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), recently partnered with the Department of Health and the AIDS Society of the Philippines to recognize seven facilities and organizations that made exceptional contributions to the country’s HIV treatment efforts. During the inaugural “Quality Uptake and Improvements in Lifesaving Treatment Services” (QUILTS) Awards held last May 31, the following facilities and organization were feted for their efforts in the following categories: Linkage to Care Champion – Bulacan Medical Center; Treatment and Care, Adher

The Tobacco Uprising of 1788

By Noralyn Dudt When the Spanish Galleon San Clemente arrived in Manila in 1592, there were 50 kilos of Cuban tobacco seeds in the ship's hold.   Historical records indicate that these seeds were later planted in the Cagayan Valley by Catholic friars. The soil and climate of the Ilocos region and the Cagayan Valley were observed to be the best for planting and growing tobacco crops. It was Governor Jose Basco y Vargas who convinced the King of Spain that growing tobacco and monopolizing its production would guarantee the colonial government in Manila its financial viability and sustainability In addition to gaining revenue for the Spanish government, the Spanish colonizers must have recognized that it was also an opportunity for them to get rich. In light of that, they started commercializing the growing of tobacco and established the Tobacco Monopoly in 1782, giving them full control of the tobacco industry. The monopoly gave them the power to regulate the processing of toba

The Basi Revolt (Second in a series of the Ilocos Revolts)

By Noralyn Dudt BASI, the Ilokano alcoholic beverage made from sugarcane juice that is fermented   and aged in a “burnay”,—a traditional earthenware—has been an integral part of the Ilokano culture even in pre-Spanish times. In his study on the “Basi Revolt”, researcher Jayson Antonio suggested that during those times basi “was one of the few—and free—pleasures in life available to the masses." They drank it after a day of hard work in the fields, they drank it when celebrating the birth of a child, they drank it to toast a couple getting married, and they drank basi in a ritualistic ablution after a funeral. From childbirth to marriage and   to death, it was part of their ritual,   tradition, and daily life. Commercial basi is produced by first crushing sugarcane and extracting the juice. The juice is then boiled in vats and then stored in earthen jars. Once the juice has cooled, flavorings made of ground glutinous rice and duhat (plum-like fruit in the tropics) or other