DOST: Balik Scientist develops kadios as skin antibiotic

Published April 30, 2021, 6:56 PM

by Charissa Luci-Atienza 

The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) has announced the development of kadios (Cajanus cajan) or black-eyed pea as skin antibiotic.

DOST Secretary Fortunato “Boy” T. de la Peña said it was Dr. Doralyn Dalisay, a Balik Scientist, who looked into the development of the legume, which is commonly grown on Panay Island, as skin antibiotic.

Balik Scientist Dr. Doralyn Dalisay (Photo from Department of Science and Technology-National Research Council of the Philippines)

He said Dalisay’s novel study focused on the chemical and biological characterization of pure and bioactive compounds from kadios (Cajanus cajan) seeds and its topical formulation studies.”

“The journey started in 2016 when Dr. Dalisay had a project with her undergraduate students from University of San Agustin to screen 20 beans in Panay Island. From the 20 beans that were investigated, only the kadios gave very promising anti-bacterial activity,” de la Peña said on the DOSTv Facebook page on Friday, April 30.

“Further studies were undertaken which found particular compounds that are responsible for the anti-bacterial activity.”

Recognizing the potential of the kadios seeds, local pharmaceutical company Maridan, University of San Agustin (USA), and DOST-Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD) forged partnership to further develop a topical formulation of kadios against skin infections caused by Staphylococcus aureus, de la Peña said.

Staphylococcus aureus is a major pathogen causing skin diseases such as boils and cuts, he said.

It is now found to be resistant to most of the clinically available antibiotics such as erythromycin, clindamycin and vancomycin, he added.

The DOST chief said the study is implemented under the DOST-PCHRD’s Drug Discovery and Development Program which is an identified priority thrust in the Unified Health Research and Agenda for 2017-2022.

“Currently on the first year, the study continues to test and isolate natural products present in kadios,” he said.

Quoting Dalisay, de la Peña said the team is not testing for only one panel of pathogen that can cause skin diseases, but also several panels of Staphylococcus aureus.

He said the study “continues to compare the resistance of natural products of kadios to other available skin antibiotics we have in the market.”