Philippine-American Academy of Science and Engineering


 Accomplished Filipinos are New PAASE Members in 2012 




Dr. Maria Lorna De Leoz is a post-doctoral fellow at the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Maryland. Lorna’s work is focused on glycan and glycopeptide analyses of therapeutic glycoproteins using mass spectrometry.  Her workled her to winning the Most Outstanding Biotechnology Presentation Award given by NIST Sigma Xi Honor Society in February 2012.  She obtained her Ph.D. in Chemistry at the University of California-Davis.  Her dissertation was on discovering glycan biomarkers for cancer and understanding the role of human milk oligosaccharides in infants using mass spectrometry.  Lorna studied B.S. Chemistry, B.S. Computer Engineering, and M.S. Chemistry at the Ateneo de Manila University.  She was named outstanding researcher twice and is a patent inventor on the synthesis of a drug.   She has over eight years of industry experience in research and development. 
Dr. Joyce A. Ibana. Dr. Ibana is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the Louisiana State University (LSU) Health Sciences Center in New Orleans, USA. Her pre-doctoral degrees are from the University of the Philippines (BS Biology from UP Los Banos and MS Molecular Biology & Biotechnology from UP Diliman). Her PhD is on Microbiology & Immunology from LSU Health Sciences Center. She has at least 11 research publications, mostly in high impact journals, and her work has been on the cover of the international journal Infection and Immunity.

Dr. Aaron Joseph L. Villaraza. Dr. Villaraza is an Associate Professor at the Institute of Chemistry, University of the Philippines–Diliman. He received a PhD in Chemistry from the University of Manchester (UK) in 2008, working on the development of heterometallic lanthanide complexes as potential multi-modal biological imaging agents. He was a Visiting Scholar at the NIH National Cancer Institute, developing polymer-antibody bioconjugates for cancer imaging. He returned to the Philippines in 2010, and his current research projects in UP Diliman involve a wide range of topics such as the discovery of bioactive secondary metabolites from mollusk-associated microbes and their total synthesis, the synthesis of amine-reactive lanthanide complexes as bioconjugate labels with novel spectroscopic signatures, and the synthesis of labelled polymeric bioactive agents as spectroscopic tools for the dynamic imaging of blood flow and pain inhibition.

Dr. M. Bayani Cardenas. Dr. Cardenas is Associate Professor and the William T. Stokes Centennial Teaching Fellow at the University of Texas at Austin. He teaches and conducts research in hydrology and hydrogeology. He received his BS from the University of the Philippines-Diliman, his MS from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and his PhD from the New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology. He received a US National Science Foundation CAREER Award and has won UT’s G. Moses and Carolyn G. Knebel Distinguished Teaching Award twice. Dr. Cardenas is also a recipient of the American Geophysical Union’s Hydrologic Sciences Early Career Award and the inaugural recipient of the Geological Society of America’s Kohout Early Career Award. He serves as the Associate Editor for Reviews of Geophysics, Water Resources Research, and Hydrogeology Journal. In 2008, he was a DOST Balik Scientist Awardee. For more information about Bayani, please click here.

Dr. Mariano R. Sto. Domingo. Dr. Sto. Domingo is an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) where he received his PhD in Human Services Psychology (Community and Applied Social Psychology Track) in 2006. He was an exchange scholar at the Johns Hopkins University, and earned master’s degrees in social psychology and international relations from the University of the Philippines, and International University of Japan, respectively. Dr. Sto. Domingo has had several years of experience evaluating education-related programs such as the Abell Foundation-funded Baraka School in Kenya and the Catholic Schools Project in Baltimore City. As Research Scientist for 5 years at UMBC, he was the program coordinator (2006-2009) and a co-investigator (2009-2001) of a National Institute of Health funded research grant entitled “Analyzing the Impact of the Meyerhoff Scholarship Program: Pathways to the PhD.” He is currently the lead program evaluator for Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Fellowship Program at UMBC and for LET’S GO (Leadership Engineering, Technology and Science Generating Opportunities) STEM Programs.

Dr. Ernesto C. Almira. Dr. Amira is an Associate Scientist and currently the Director of Special Projects Section at the Interdisciplinary Center for the Biotechnology Research (ICBR) at the University of Florida, Gainesville, FL. He is currently the Chair of the Scientific Advisory Committee for the Philippine Genome Center’s DNA Sequencing Core Facility and Genomics Program, currently housed at the new National Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology building at the National Science Center in UP Diliman. Ernie is a graduate of the University of the Philippines at Los Banos (BSc, cum laude, Agricultural Chemistry) and Auburn University, Alabama (MSc, PhD, Biochemistry). He has been a three-time short-term Balik-Scientist awardee (1997, 2011 and 2012) in the field of genomics.

Dr. Joel L. Cuello. Dr. Cuello is a Professor of Biosystems Engineering at The University of Arizona. He obtained his Ph.D. in Agricultural and Biological Engineering from The Pennsylvania State University in 1994, as were his two Master degrees – an M.S. in Agricultural and Biological Engineering and an M.S. in Plant Physiology. He earned his B.S. in Agricultural Engineering, cum laude, from the University of the Philippines at Los Banos in 1984. Dr. Cuello served as a U.S. National Resource Council Research Associate at NASA John F. Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida in 1994, and started as an Assistant Professor at The University of Arizona in 1995. He was promoted to Associate Professor with tenure in 2001, and was promoted to Full Professor in 2009. Dr. Cuello has received research grants from NASA, the United States Department of Agriculture, the U.S. National Science Foundation and the U.S. Department of Energy, among others. He has published over 50 refereed journal articles, and has given over two hundred academic presentations all over the world. Dr. Cuello currently serves as the President of the Arizona Chapter of the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) and a member of the U.S. National Academies Committee on the Sustainability of Algae Biofuels.

Dr. Jingky Lozano-Kühne is a biostatistician/epidemiologist with a Bachelor and Master of Science in Public Health (Biostatistics) and a PhD in Applied Statistics and Empirical Methods in the field of Genetic Epidemiology. She was a research fellow of the Graduiertenkolleg at the University of Göttingen in Germany and had contributed her expertise to various training programs and research projects in the Philippines, Germany and the United Kingdom.  She is currently a senior researcher at the Department of Public Health, University of Oxford. For more info about Jingky, please click here.
Dr. Vincent Ricardo Daria. Dr. Daria is a fellow at the Australian National University (ANU) and jointly affiliated with the Research School of Physics and Engineering and the John Curtin School of Medical Research. He earned his PhD in Applied Physics from Osaka University.  In 2001, he worked at the Risoe National Laboratory(Denmark) where he and colleagues pioneered the use of dynamic multi-beam optical tweezers for manipulating arrays of microscopic objects and cells simultaneously. In 2004, he established a research group at the University of the Philippines to work on ultrafast lasers in combination with spatial light encoding for multi-beam optical tweezers combined with non-linear optical processes. Such technique was applied to laser nanosurgery, manipulation of cells and 3D holographic microfabrication.  While in the Philippines, Dr. Daria received the NAST Outstanding Young Scientist award, NRCP achievement award in Physics and the TWAS award for young scientists. In 2007, he joined ANU where he developed a holographic multi-photon multi-functional microscope to study how mammalian neurons process information individually or in a network. For more info, click here.

Dr. Ma. Louise Antonette N. de Las Peñas

Dr. de Las Peñas is a Professor in the Department of Mathematics and Research Coordinator of the School of Science and Engineering at Ateneo de Manila University. Her research is in the areas of mathematical crystallography, with a specific focus on quasicrystals.  She is also collaborating with chemists doing work in nanotechnology.  Dr. De Las Peñas is Editor of the Electronic Journal of Mathematics and Technology, a member of the NRCP (recipient of the Outstanding Achievement in Research Award in Mathematics), and the International Program Committee of the Asian Technology Conference in Mathematics.  She received her Ph.D. in Mathematics form the University of the Philippines.  

Dr. Raul Destura

Dr. Destura is the Director of the Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology at the National Institutes of Health, University of the Philippines-Manila.  His expertise is in the area of infectious diseases and he is working on important health issues in the Philippines including tuberculosis, H1N1 virus, cryptosporidiosis and dengue infection. He was active in the area of drug development and a co-inventor in a patent cooperation treaty (PCT) application and is a co-inventor in a Philippine patent application on the Dengue diagnostic kit.  Dr. Destura is also a highly successful consulting physician at The Medical City in the Philippines.  He has received the 2008 Outstanding Young Scientist of the Philippines in Medicine awarded by the National Academy of Science and Technology, the Bill and Melinda Gates Award for the 2005 Keystone Symposia Conference, and was selected to be a member of the 20 international young physician leaders chosen by the Inter-Academy Medical Panel, an organization involving over 75 academies of science all over the world.  More information about Dr. Destura HERE.

Dr. Rommel Bacabac

Dr. Bacabac is an Associate Professor and Group Leader of the Medical Biophysics Group in the Department of Physics at the University of San Carlos.  He received his Ph.D. from the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam in The Netherlands (cum laude).  His areas of expertise are in microgravity and bone cell mechanosensitivity, and cell-gel complexes.   He has served on the Advisory Committee of the International Symposium on Mechanobiology at the International conference on Biophysics and Molecular Biology. Dr. Bacabac received the S. M. Perren Award of the European Society of Biomechanics (Munich, Germany), and the Experimental Award of Excellence at the 5th International Bone Fluid Flow Workshop (Ohio, USA).

Dr. Maria Marjorette O. Peña

Dr. Peña is a Research Associate Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences and Center for Colon Cancer Research at the University of South Carolina.  A cancer biologist, her research area is focused on the complex interactions between tumor cells and the normal cells and their surrounding microenvironment.  Dr. Peña received her Ph.D. in molecular biology at Bowling Green State University, and she was a National Institutes of Health Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Michigan Medical School.  She has received the Mortarboard Excellence in Teaching Award from the Univ. of South Carolina, and her Ph.D. research won the Sigma Xi Honor Society Graduate Research Competition.  Dr. Peña is also active in the Filipino community in South Carolina, and is currently President of the Filipino-American Association of Greater Columbia.  More information on Dr. Pena HERE.

Dr. Frederick Villamena

Dr. Villamena is an Associate Professor in the Department of Pharmacology at The Ohio State University.  He obtained his Ph.D. in Chemistry from Georgetown University and received an Institutional NIH-Ruth L.Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) and fellowship with Prof. Jay Zweier at the Davis Heart and Lung Research Institute, OhioState University Medical Center, Columbus, OH and the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions.  He also did postdoctoral stints at the Institut de Chimie de la Metière Condenséede Bordeaux, Pessac, France and at the Environmental Protection Agency in Cincinnati, Ohio.  His area of expertise is in in the field of spin-trapped radical in biomedical applications and phenomena. More information HERE.

Dr. Silverio Cabellon

Dr. Cabellon is a vascular surgeon at the Washington Vascular and Thoracic Associates, L.L.C. in Washington DC.  He received his MD from the University of the Philippines College of Medicine, and is a Diplomate of the American Board of Surgery and the American Board of Vascular Surgery.  He was Consultant to the US Army Surgeon General in Vascular Surgery, and Chief of General Surgery at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center.  He was named Top Doctor by the Washington Magazine, Best Teacher (Surgery) by the Washington Hospital Center, and is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons.

Dr. Gerardo C. Maxino

Dr. Maxino is President and Professor of Physics at Maxino College, Dumaguete City.  He was previously Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and Professor of Physics at Silliman University, and Professor of Physics at the University of San Carlos.  Dr. Maxino’s area is in education, in particular high school physics education, and was among the first to actively promote physics education strategies to schools and colleges in the southern part of the Philippines.  Dr. Maxino has also carried out extensive synergistic activities that range from editorship of technical publications toadvisorship of community/student organizations to lay ecclesial ministries atlocal parishes.  He is founder of the Philippine Physics Society and Director of the Association of Philippine Colleges of Arts and Sciences.  He has received the Outstanding Faculty Award (Silliman University) and the Outstanding Oriental Negrense Award (Province of Negros Oriental).  More information HERE.

Dr. Celeste Aida S. Regino

Dr. Regino is Senior Scientist in Bioconjugation Chemistry at Immunomedics, Inc.  She received her Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Florida.  She was a Senior Research Fellow at the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health, a Visiting Fellow in the Radioimmune and Inorganic Chemistry Section of NCI, and was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Florida.  Her research interests are on development of agents for drug delivery and imaging using magnetic resonance techniques.  The broad research problems that she addresses are: (1) the improvement in the diagnosis of diseases and recognition of the ailment at its earlier stages; (2) development and delivery of therapeutic and/or imaging agents effectively with less systemic toxicity; and (3) monitoring drug delivery process to determine its location, its distribution, and its (initial) cytotoxic response through noninvasive imaging.