Head of Forensic DNA Typing and Parentage Testing
Nandika Perera joined Genetech in early 2004 soon after its inception and was part of the pioneering team led by late Dr. Maya Gunasekera, who introduced molecular diagnostics and DNA typing services to Sri Lanka. In subsequent years, he was promoted to the post of Senior Scientist and in 2010, he became the Head of the Parentage Testing Section. Currently, he is also the Head of Forensic DNA typing and has provided more than 2500 DNA typing reports to the Sri Lankan Judiciary.
He together with his team has established several in-house molecular diagnostic tests including a test for prenatal diagnosis of thalassemia disease. More recently, he introduced X chromosome STR typing to Sri Lanka to be used in forensic and kinship analysis. The technique offers a significant advantage over the other commonly used DNA typing methods in resolving some specific cases of kinship which cannot be conclusively resolved otherwise. He is also involved in various other molecular biology related research in collaboration with many state and private universities and research institutes in Sri Lanka. His portfolio of works includes many research publications, some in the world’s leading high-impact journals such as Scientific Reports of Nature publishing group and International Journal of Legal Medicine which is testimonial of his illustrative career in the field of molecular genetics.
Nandika is an alumnus of both the University of Colombo and Institute of Chemistry, Sri Lanka. He holds two Honours degrees, one in the field of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry (from University of Colombo) and the other in Chemistry (from Institute of Chemistry, Sri Lanka). He obtained his master’s degree in Molecular Life Sciences at the Institute of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, University of Colombo and has completed his Ph.D. in the field of Molecular Forensics at the Faculty of Health Sciences, Open University of Sri Lanka and pending his thesis defense. He is the recipient of many academic awards including the Gold Medal for the best academic performance in his Master’s Degree, the award for the best performance in part 1 examination in Graduateship in Chemistry and the W. F. Peiris Memorial Scholarship in Graduateship in Chemistry.