UNAIR NEWS – In understanding a phenomenon through an academic perspective, a cross-sectoral approach is often needed in order to gain a more progressive understanding. It inspired the Scientific and Study Forum (FORISMA) Faculty of Medicine, Universitas Airlangga (FK UNAIR) to hold a Inter-Faculty webinar INTERSECTION 10.00 on Sunday, December 20, 2020.
In an event entitled ‘Break the Limit: Multifield Research Opportunities’, two speakers from science and social cluster were also present to give their views on health in the perspective of human migration and anthropology.
UNAIR Faculty of Medicine’s lecturer M. Miftahussurur, dr. M.Kes., Sp.PD-KGEH., Ph.D. as the first speaker revealed that the historical traces of human migration are able to describe the health and disease in each human race. dr Miftah explained where humans basically come from the same geographic area, Africa.
“From there, people migrated and split into two groups. There are those migrated to Europe and Asia. Then, it led to genetic changes and forms various human races according to the geographic situation they live in,” explained UNAIR Vice Rector for Internationalization, Digitalization and Information.
These genetic mutations then cause differences in health and diseases that infect each human race. Dr. Miftah, who focuses on the field of bacterial research, revealed that there is one bacterium that is able to explain the traces of migration and human health, Helicobacter pylori.
Bacteria that often cause stomach cancer are also mutated following human genetic changes. So, often the presence of these bacteria causes different opportunities and types of diseases that are often suffered by certain human races.
“If we know how the migration and the development of genetic mutations, it will be easier for us to detect what diseases are likely to infect us,” he added.
Meanwhile, the second speaker, Dr.phil., Dra. Toetik Koesbardiati as an anthropology lecturer, sees basic health issues from a physical anthropology perspective. Dr. Toetik explained that physical anthropology is a multidisciplinary study consisting of slices of health, socio-cultural, and bioscience.
“One of the basic health aspects can be seen from the perspective of cultural and health development looking at the history of the Earth’s climate in the holocene period as well as the comparison of human life, sedentary or nomadic,” he explained.
In anthropology, it can also be seen from fossil findings, traces of human migration, and the socio-cultural conditions of society. In the case of diarrhea disease in rural areas, for example, anthropology can see that it turns out that polluted water sources, as well as traditional and social habits of the community, are able to influence high number of sufferers.
From the webinar held via Zoom app, the two speakers highlighted that a more advanced and precise understanding of health issues can not only be seen from a clinical perspective but also requires historical, social, cultural studies, even traces of genetic mutation of bacteria. *)
Author: Intang Arifia
Editor: Khefti Al Mawalia