Dr Dilrukshi Nagahatenna

Dr Dilrukshi Nagahatenna
 Position Grant Funded Researcher (Level A)
 Org Unit The University of Adelaide
 Email dilu.nagahatenna@adelaide.edu.au
 Telephone +61 8 8313 0773
 Location Floor/Room 1 ,  Plant Research Centre ,   Waite
  • Biography/ Background

    Education:

    B.Sc. (Hons.) in Agriculture, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka (2006)

    M.Phil in Plant Biotechnology, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka (2009)

    PhD. in Plant Molecular Biology, University of Adelaide, Australia (2015)

     

    Academic Positions:

    2021-2022      Grant Funded Researcher (Level A) – University of Adelaide (2021-2022)

    2015-2019      Technical Officer – Commonwealth Scientific Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO)

    -Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation-funded Capturing Heterosis project (A$22M) which aimed at developing self-reproducible cowpea hybrids through meiosis-specific gene editing and silencing

    2011-2015            PhD, School of Agriculture, Food and Wine, University of Adelaide

    -GRDC and DuPont Pioneers, USA funded project on investigating the role of Tetrapyrrole biosynthesis on enhancing drought tolerance in the model cereal crop, barley

    2009-2011       Demonstrator/Lecturer, Uva Wellassa University, Sri Lanka

    2006-2009       Graduate Research Assistant, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka

     

  • Awards & Achievements

    2014                Australian Grains Research & Development Corporation (GRDC) Travel Award

    2014                Australian Society of Plant Scientists (ASPS) Travel Award

    2011-2015       Adelaide Scholarship International (ASI) Full Scholarship

    2011-2015       Australian Centre for Plant Functional Genomics (ACPFG) supplementary scholarship

    2008              Award for the Best Presenter in the session on Plant Breeding and Biotechnology at the 20th Annual Congress, Postgraduate Institute of Agriculture, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka

    2007               Award for the best research paper at the 19th Annual Congress, Postgraduate Institute of Agriculture, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka

    2007               Award for the best presenter in the session on Horticulture at the 19th Annual Congress, Postgraduate Institute of Agriculture, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka

     

  • Research Interests

    Dilrukshi is a plant molecular biologist with extensive research expertise in drought stress signalling, CRISPR-CAS9-mediated gene editing, genetic transformation and plant physiology. She received her PhD from the University of Adelaide in 2015. She has worked on a number of internationally collaborative research projects, which aimed at broadening our scientific understanding on gene functions and metabolic pathways implicated in stress tolerance of economically important crop species such as barley, cowpea, grapevine, and medicinal plants. Her current research are focused on 1) investigating molecular mechanisms underpinning long-term drought adaptability in grapevine and 2) understanding the etiology of Grapevine Virus A (GVA)-mediated Shiraz disease through next generation sequencing approach.
  • Research Funding

    2021-2022  AWRI-UoA Collaborative Research Partnership Fund for the project "Towards an understanding of the etiology of the Shiraz disease in Australian vineyards" ($50,000)

  • Publications

    Patent:

    2016   Nagahatenna, D.S.K and Whitford, R. Ferrochelatase compositions and methods to increase agronomic performance of plants. United States Patent WO2016054462 A1.

    Publications:

    2021    Pagay, V., Furlan, T.S., Kidman, C.M., Nagahatenna, D.S.K. Drought resilience of long-term dry-farmed grapevines (Vitis vinifera L.). bioRxiv.

    2020    Nagahatenna, D.S.K., Tiong, J., Edwards, E. J., Langridge, P., Whitford, R. (2020). Altering tetrapyrrole biosynthesis by overexpressing Ferrochelatases (FC1 and FC2), improves photosynthesis in transgenic barley. Agronomy, 10, 1370.

    2020   Nagahatenna, D.S.K., Parent, B., Edwards, E. J., Langridge, P., Whitford, R. (2020). Barley plants overexpressing Ferrochelatases (HvFC1 and HvFC2) show improved photosynthetic rates and have reduced photo-oxidative damage under drought stress than non-transgenic controls. Agronomy, 10, 1351.

    2020      Juranic, M., Nagahatenna, D.S.K., Salinas-Gamboa, R., Hand, M. L., Sanchez-Leon, N., Leong, W. H., How, T., Bazanova, N., Spriggs, A., Vielle-Calzada, J., Koltunow, A.M. (2020). A detached leaf assay for testing transient gene expression and gene editing in cowpea (Vigna unguiculata [L.] Walp.). Plant Methods, 16(88)

    2015    Nagahatenna, D.S.K., Langridge, P. and Whitford, R. (2015). Review-Tetrapyrrole-based drought stress signalling. Plant Biotechnology Journal 13; 4. 447-459. (Impact Factor 6.305)

    2008     Nagahatenna D.S.K. and Peiris S. E. (2008). In vitro micropropagation of Osbeckia Octandra (L) Dc. (Heen Bovitiya) through single nodal culture. Journal of Tropical Agricultural Research,22: 104‐112.

    2007      Nagahatenna D.S.K. and Peiris S. E. (2007). In vitro propagation of Hemidesmus Indicus (L.) R. Br. (Iramusu) through nodal culture. Journal of Tropical Agricultural Research,19: 181‐192.

  • Professional Associations

    Australian Society of Plant Scientists

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Entry last updated: Thursday, 29 Jul 2021

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