A UNIVERSITY researcher from the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) said advances in marine biotechnologies are currently being done to develop compounds useful to eradicate disease-causing viruses.

UPLB researcher Dr. Lourdes Taylo said the Department of Science and Technology, specifically the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic, and Natural Resources Research and Development is on its exploratory stages for the Philippine PharmaSeas Drug Discovery Program through the Marine Science Institute of the UP-Diliman.

The project was started because of the emergence of drug-resistant disease-causing microorganisms. Because of this, the scientists saw the need to develop drugs and other useful chemical compounds to eradicate the microorganisms.

According to their earlier studies, marine sponges contain biologically active compounds against tuberculosis, pneumonia, and other infectious diseases.

Marine snail venoms, specifically that of turrid snails, had been discovered significant in cancer management as well as the combination therapy component of the antibiotics detected in them.

With these new projects in the pipeline of the research and development sector, Taylo warned consumers and farmers to be wary of fake news about biotechnology that may be spreading around, creating false fear about the technology.

She said readers should question the bases for such news to determine whether or not they are legitimate or not.