A research team which included DR. DENNIS APUAN of the University of Science and Technology of Southern Philippines (USTP) and his wife MS. MARY JEAN APUAN of Xavier University (XU) recently discovered a native fern, Pteris melanocaulon, which has the rare capability to absorb high concentrations of the toxic element arsenic.

The discovery is deemed significant particularly in the rehabilitation of closed mining sites. See photos of the fern below courtesy of Dr. Dennis Apuan.

Photo below shows Mary Jean Apuan and the fern.

photo courtesy of Dr. Dennis Apuan

The research team was led by Dr. Rene Claveria and Dr. Teresita Perez from the Environmental Science Department of Ateneo de Manila University and also included Ms. Ellaine Perez of the Institute of Biology of the University of the Philippines. Mentoring them was Dr. Augustine Doronila, a DOST Balikscientist from the University of Melbourne.

photo courtesy of Dr. Dennis Apuan

Check out screenshot of the study that was published at Chemosphere journal.

Listen to Mary Jean’s radio interview in the link below.

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