The NAST Philippines, the government’s highest recognition and advisory body on science and technology joins the scientific community in mourning the demise of Academician Ramon F. Abarque Jr. He passed away on January 9, 2018. He was 89.

Acd. Abarquez is recognized by NAST in 1993 for his significant contributions in the field of cardiovascular diseases and to exercise ECG methodology. His career has yielded many of the seminal papers in cardiology over the years – pioneering works that are no less than groundbreaking. Among his important pioneering works include: ECG testing during exercise using an electrode he designed which is universally accepted for its superior prognostic implications; the ECG diagnosis of hypokalemia (low levels of potassium in the blood); and the use of digitalis as prophylactic and protectant against heart failure. He, with other scientists, was also involved in the study on thrombolysis (clot) dissolution, now a standard therapy for typical heart attack cases first studied in 1964 inexperimentally occluded coronary vessels in dogs.

He obtained his AB (1948) and MD (1953) from the University of the Philippines. He undertook post graduate training in internal medicine, cardiology and physiology at Memorial Bellevue Division of Cornell Medical School, New York City on a Rockefeller Fellowship and New York Heart Association Research Grant. From instructor, he worked his way to Professor at the College of Medicine, UP Manila and held various positions at UP. He also held positions in private sector and hospitals.

Among his many awards are the Cultural Heritage Award for outstanding contribution to science and technology (1963), Achievement Award in Medical Sciences, Philippine National Science Society (National Research Council of the Philippines) (1989), and Distinguished Scientist Award, Philippine Heart Association (1986).

NAST PHL held a necrological service, in coordination with the Philippine College of Physicians and Philippine Society of Hypertension, at 7:00PM at Heritage Memorial Park, Taguig City.