Dr. Nina G. Barzaga, president of the Biotechnology Coalition of the Philippines (BCP), has been appointed as the new dean of the University of the Philippines-College of Public Health (UP-CPH).
Recognized for her research on edible vaccines, a pioneering work in biotechnology, Barzaga graduated at the top 10 percent of UP College of Medicine Class 1979. She started as instructor in 1982 and became full professor in 2005. She was a consistent college and university scholar when she took her B.S. in Public Health at the same university.
Barzaga pursued her doctoral studies at the University of Melbourne and earned her Ph.D in microbial immunology in 1988.
She trained hundreds of undergraduates, masteral and doctoral students at the UP-CPH, training all of them on microbial immunology. Many of her students are now recognized professionals in the country and abroad.
Barzaga used her training in medical microbiology, immunology and biotechnology in establishing an immunochemistry laboratory at the Department of Medical Microbiology through a grant from the World Health Organization (WHO).
Her laboratory has expanded and now covers research on the sero-epidemiology of Hepatitis A, B, C, Hantaan virus, molecular analyses of human immunodeficiency virus and hepatitis, along with developmental research on cholera and salmonella.
She is the chairwoman of the National Certification Committee for the Philippines in the Poliomyelitis Program of the WHO since 1997.
Barzaga also oversaw the validation of the implementation of the polio eradication program of the Department of Health.
In 2006, Barzaga was bestowed the Outstanding Professional Award by the UP Alumni Association for her 25 years of successful work in public health.