I obtained my B.S. degree in Biology from Truman State University, Missouri , USA (1994) and my PhD in Microbiology and Immunology from Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine, USA(2000). I have over 10 years of overseas experience working at top –level infectious disease and immunology laboratories and over 50 international scientific publications.
Currently I am a Senior Lecturer in the Department of
Paraclinical Sciences and am Head of the Biomedical Laboratory-2 at the Faculty of
Medicine, KDU. I hold an Adjunct Associate Professor position at the La Jolla
Institute of Immunology, California, USA. I lecture in Immunology & Biotechnology
at KDU and am a visiting lecturer in Immunology at IBMBB, University of Colombo. In addition I have served on various Scientific evaluation panels (Biotechnology & Technology Committee) at the National Science Foundation and served as Chairman of the Working committee on Biotechnology from 2019 to 2020. I was the former Director and a Senior Scientist
at the Genetech Research Institute from 2008 to 2017.
I have run a research lab in Sri Lanka over the last 10 years and conduct research with grants from foreign and local funding agencies to study Dengue, Tuberculosis, COVID-19 & the pathogen Burkholderia pseudomallei. I have received a National Award for Science & Technology Achievement (NASTA) in 2014.
Academic & Professional Qualifications
- Ph.D. (Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine, USA)
- B.Sc. (Truman State University, Missouri, USA)
- 1994 - 2000 Microbiology & Immunology PhD research program (USA) - Study of antigen presentation by the immune system
- 2000 - 2007 Post-doctoral Research (USA) - Study of Mycobacterium tuberculosis and Immunology
- 2008 - 2017 Head of Research Lab (Sri Lanka) - Studies in Dengue, Tuberculosis, Melioidosis & Immunology
- 2017 to date Head of Research Lab & Senior Lecturer - Studies in Dengue, TB, COVID-19, Melioidosis & Immunology
- 2012 to date: Adjunct Associate Professor, Division of Vaccine Discovery, La Jolla Institute of Immunology, La Jolla, CA, USA
- 2008 to date: Working Committee on Biotechnology, National Science Foundation, Sri Lanka
- 2008 to date: Visiting Lecturer in Immunology, Institute of Biotechnology, Molecular Biology & Biochemistry, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka
2014 Presidents Award for Scientific Publication in 2011, award received in Oct 2014
2014 Invited Speaker, Department of Hygiene, Microbiology & Social Medicine, Innsbruck Medical University, Austria “Dengue – Epidemiologic situation in Sri Lanka & further insights into the immunologic mystery” – Special Invitation 1 hour talk
2014 Plenary Speaker, Medical Research Institute (MRI, Sri Lanka), Research Day “Dengue in Sri Lanka: Where are the new strains coming from?” 30th July 2014
2014 National Award for Science & Technology Achievements (NASTA) for Harnessing advanced technologies through international collaborations. The award was received from H.E. Maithripala Sirisena, the President of Sri Lanka in February 2015.
2015 Presidents Award for Scientific
Publication in 2013, award
received in Nov 2015
2016 Presidents Award for Scientific Publication in 2014, award received in Nov 2016
2016 Invited Speaker, United States Army Medical Research Institute for Infectious Diseases, Maryland USA “Melioidosis in Sri Lanka: Uncovering an Iceberg” 16th Feb, 2016
2016 Resource person/Speaker, “Workshop on Interdisciplinarity in Scientific Research: Commercialization and Technology Transfer” Organized by SLAAS. Title; “Harnessing Biotechnology Research and Innovation for National Development”, 28th June 2016
2017 Invited speaker, 2nd South Asian Melioidosis Congress, “Immune responses in B. pseudomallei infection” 29th Augu
- Expansion of natural (NK1+) T cells that express alpha beta T cell receptors in transporters associated with antigen presentation-1 null and thymus leukemia antigen positive mice
- Distinct Roles for Signals Relayed through the Common Cytokine Receptor ? Chain and Interleukin 7 Receptor ? Chain in Natural T Cell Development
- Natural ligand of mouse CD1d1: cellular glycosylphosphatidylinositol
- Thermolabile H-2Kb molecules expressed by transporter associated with antigen processing-deficient RMA-S cells are occupied by low-affinity peptides
- Lipid protein interactions: the assembly of CD1d1 with cellular phospholipids occurs in the endoplasmic reticulum
- Defective presentation of the CD1d1-restricted natural Va14Ja18 NKT lymphocyte antigen caused by ?-D-glucosylceramide synthase deficiency
- Lipid-protein interactions: biosynthetic assembly of CD1 with lipids in the endoplasmic reticulum is evolutionarily conserved
- Induction of high levels of protective immunity in mice after vaccination using dendritic cells infected with auxotrophic mutants of Mycobacterium tuberculosis
- 5'-Adenosinephosphosulphate reductase (CysH) protects Mycobacterium tuberculosis against free radicals during chronic infection phase in mice
- Genotypes of hepatitis C virus (HCV) in liver disease patients in Sri Lanka
- Dengue Surveillance in Colombo, Sri Lanka: Baseline seroprevalence among children
- HLA class I and class II associations in dengue viral infections in a Sri Lankan population
- Insights into HLA-restricted T cell responses in a novel mouse model of dengue virus infection point toward new implications for vaccine design
- New dengue virus type 1 genotype in Colombo, Sri Lanka
- Comprehensive analysis of dengue virus-specific responses supports an HLA-linked protective role for CD8+ T cells
- Estimates of dengue force of infection in children in Colombo, Sri Lanka
- A comparison of an in-house IgM and IgG assay with a commercial Panbio kit, in a paediatric cohort in Colombo, Sri Lanka.
- Surveillance of dengue in a community cohort in Metropolitan Colombo, Sri Lanka: part I methods and study population.
- Properties of MHC class I presented peptides that enhance immunogenicity
- Phylogeography and molecular epidemiology of an epidemic strain of dengue virus type 1 in Sri Lanka
- Burden of dengue infection and disease in a pediatric cohort in urban Sri Lanka
- Preexisting neutralizing antibody responses distinguish clinically inapparent and apparent dengue virus infections in a Sri Lankan pediatric cohort
- The human CD8+ T cell responses induced by a live attenuated tetravalent dengue vaccine are directed against highly conserved epitopes
- An Under-recognized influenza epidemic indentified by rapid influenza testing, southern Sri lanka, 2013
- Genetics of common Variable immunodeficiency: role of Transmembrane activator and calcium modulator and cyclophilin ligand interactor.
- Evaluation of a Commercial Rapid Test Kit For Detection Of Acute Dengue Infection
- Dengue virus infection elicits highly polarized CX3CR1+ cytotoxic CD4+ T cells associated with protective immunity
- Use of rapid influenza testing to reduce antibiotic prescriptions among outpatients with influenza-like illness in southern Sri Lanka
- Human CD8+ T-Cell Responses Against the 4 Dengue Virus Serotypes Are Associated With Distinct Patterns of Protein Targets
- Polymorphisms of Transporter Associated with Antigen Presentation, Tumor Necrosis Factor-? and Interleukin-10 and their Implications for Protection and Susceptibility to Severe Forms of Dengue Fever in Patients in Sri Lanka
- Laboratory-Enhanced Dengue Sentinel surveillance in Colombo district, Sri Lanka: 2012-2014
- Immunodominant Dengue Virus-Specific CD8+ T Cell Responses Are Associated with a Memory PD-1+ Phenotype
- HLA-DRB1 Alleles Are Associated With Different Magnitudes of Dengue Virus-Specific CD4+ T-Cell Responses
- Emergence of Epidemic Dengue-1 Virus in the southern Province of Sri Lanka.
- Human CD4+ T Cell Responses to an Attenuated Tetravalent Dengue Vaccine Parallel Those Induced by Natural Infection in Magnitude, HLA Restriction, and Antigen Specificity
- An Integrated Workflow To Assess Technical and Biological Variability of Cell Population Frequencies in Human Peripheral Blood by Flow Cytometry
- Calprotectin as a Biomarker for Melioidosis Disease Progression and Management
- Patterns of Cellular Immunity Associated with Experimental Infection with rDEN2?30 (Tonga/74) Support Its Suitability as a Human Dengue Virus Challenge Strain
- Gene Expression Profile of Human Cytokines in Response to Burkholderia pseudomallei Infection
- Host gene expression analysis in Sri Lankan melioidosis patients
- Burden and seasonality of viral acute respiratory tract infections among outpatients in southern Sri Lanka
- Analysis of Dengue Serotype 4 in Sri Lanka during the 2012-2013 Dengue Epidemic
- Prior Dengue Virus Exposure Shapes T Cell Immunity to Zika Virus in Humans
- Global Assessment of Dengue Virus-Specific CD4+ T Cell Responses in Dengue-Endemic Areas
- DENV-specific CD4 T-cells dominantly recognize capsid-derived epitopes and display a cytotoxic phenotype
- Unique phenotypes and clonal expansions of human CD4 effector memory T cells re-expressing CD45RA
- Longitudinal Analysis of Antibody Cross-neutralization Following Zika Virus and Dengue Virus Infection in Asia and the Americas
- Evaluation of the WHO 2009 classification for diagnosis of acute dengue in a large cohort of adults and children in Sri Lanka during a dengue-1 epidemic
- Precursors of human CD4+ cytotoxic T lymphocytes identified by single-cell transcriptome analysis
- Sequence-based HLA-A, B, C, DP, DQ, and DR typing of 714 adults from Colombo, Sri Lanka.
- Clinical, Bacteriologic, and Geographic Stratification of Melioidosis Emerges from the Sri Lankan National Surveillance Program
- Development of Envelope Protein Antigens To Serologically Differentiate Zika Virus Infection from Dengue Virus Infection
- Melioidosis in Sri Lanka
- Preliminary study on chronic granulomatous disease in Sri Lanka.
- Is Total Serum Nitrite and Nitrate (NOx) Level in Dengue Patients a Potential Prognostic Marker of Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever?
- Respiratory Viral Infection: An Underappreciated Cause of Acute Febrile Illness Admissions in Southern Sri Lanka
- Cutting Edge: Transcriptional Profiling Reveals Multifunctional and Cytotoxic Antiviral Responses of Zika Virus-Specific CD8+ T Cells.
- Dengue type 1 viruses circulating in humans are highly infectious and poorly neutralized by human antibodies.
- Dengue-specific CD8+ T cell subsets display specialized transcriptomic and TCR profiles.
- A lipid-encapsulated mRNA encoding a potently neutralizing human monoclonal antibody protects against chikungunya infection.
- Whole-Genome Sequences of Eight Clinical Isolates of Burkholderia pseudomallei from Melioidosis Patients in Eastern Sri Lanka
- Characterization of Magnitude and Antigen Specificity of HLA-DP, DQ, and DRB3/4/5 Restricted DENV-Specific CD4+ T Cell Responses.
- Circulating T cell-monocyte complexes are markers of immune perturbations
- Molecular Signatures of Dengue Virus-Specific IL-10/IFN-? Co-producing CD4 T Cells and Their Association with Dengue Disease
- High Levels of Serum Angiopoietin 2 and Angiopoietin 2/1 Ratio at the Critical Stage of Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever in Patients and Association with Clinical and Biochemical Parameters
- T cell responses induced by attenuated flavivirus vaccination are specific and show limited cross-reactivity with other flavivirus species
- Human mAbs Broadly Protect against Arthritogenic Alphaviruses by Recognizing Conserved Elements of the Mxra8 Receptor-Binding Site
- Molecular Signatures of Dengue Virus-Specific IL-10/IFN-g Co-producing CD4 T cells and their Association with Dengue Disease
- High levels of Serum Angiopoietin 2/1 Ratio at the Critical Stage of Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever in Patients and Association with Clinical and Biochemical Parameters
- T Cell Responses Induced by Attenuated Flavivirus Vaccination Are Specific and Show Limited Cross-Reactivity with Other Flavivirus Species.
- Geospatial analysis of dengue emergence in rural areas in the Southern Province of Sri Lanka.
- Human mAbs Broadly Protect against Arthritogenic Alphaviruses by Recognizing Conserved Elements of the Mxra8 Receptor-Binding Site.
- Natesan M. An increase in p62/NBR1 levels in melioidosis patients of Sri Lanka exhibit a characteristic of potential host biomarker