Professor Udumalagala Gamage Chandrika from the Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Medical Sciences received the most prestigious award – the Vice Chancellor’s Award as the best researcher of the year 2017 from University of Sri Jayewardenepura at the annual research award ceremony held on Oct 3 at Golden Rose hotel Boralesgamuwa.
Professor Chandrika had primary and secondary education at Anula Vidyalaya, Nugegoda and obtained the B.Sc. Special Degree in Chemistry with a Second Class Upper division in 1992 from the University of Sri Jayewardenepura. She obtained her M.Phil. from Massey University, New Zealand in 1999 and the Ph.D. is from the University of Sri Jayewardenepura with the collaboration of Gothenburg University of Technology, Sweden and University of Campinas, Brazil in the year 2004.
She commenced her academic career as Demonstrator/Assistant Lecturer in the Faculty of Applied Sciences, the University of Sri Jayewardenepura in 1992 and then she joined the Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Medical Sciences in 1994 as Lecturer and subsequently she was promoted to Senior Lecturer, Associate Professor to her current position as a Professor in Biochemistry.
She is a Fellow of Institute of Chemistry of Ceylon and Vice President- College of Biochemists in Sri Lanka, also has been awarded several research fellowships and scholarships from different countries to up-grade her research capabilities such as
- Australian government (AUS- AID) scholarship to have research training in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry at the University of NSW, Australia
- International Programme in the Chemical Sciences (IPICS)-for carrying out research related to carotenoids analysis and its bioaccessibility studies at Campinas University in Sao Paulo, Brazil and Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, Sweden Respectively
- Two fellowships from Asian Molecular Biology Organisation (AMBO)-to participate in the Training Course on “Innovative Research Strategies for Tomorrow at Osaka University, Japan and to participate in the International Training Course on Exploring Structural Biology by Synchrotron Protein Crystallography – Institute of Biological Chemistry, Academia Sinica, Taipei, Taiwan
- International Union for Pure and Applied Biophysics (IUPAB) to participate in Workshop on “NMR and its applications in Biological Systems”, Tata Institute, India
- Visiting Professor – University of Auckland, New Zealand in recognition of her outstanding research career.
Prestigious awards she received are as follows
- Five Presidential Research awards for publications in 2003,2005,2006, 2007 and 2010
- Three National Research Council Merit Awards for research in 2010, 2011 and 2015
- Prof. M U S Sulthanbawa award for the best paper presented at the annual sessions, Institute of Chemistry Sri Lanka in 2004
- Kandiah Memorial award I for the best piece of research in Chemistry carried out by the postgraduate student working in a higher educational Institution in 2005
- SUSRED Awards for supervising and completing Ph.D. within a stipulated time period in 2017
She is an internationally renowned researcher in relation to Carotenoid analysis and vitro bioaccessibility studies on fruits and vegetables with beneficial effects on health and alleviation of Vitamin A deficiency, and has been invited to write book chapters in several internationally reputed publishers such as John Wiley and Sons Ltd and Elsevier, Review articles for reputed international journals and invited lectures at several international conferences in relation to her carotenoids research etc. Currently, she is intensively conducting research related to Bioactivity-guided fractionation and identification of Bioactive natural products from plant foods and traditional medicinal plants (in vivo bioactivities such as anti-diabetic, anti-inflammatory, hepatoprotective, anti-dengue, anti-oxidant).
In addition, she has supervised and completed four PhDs and five M. Phils degrees up to date. She currently supervises 4 PhDs and 2 MPhil degrees.
Prof. Chandrika has over 40 publications in peer-reviewed indexed journals with more than 20 publications in Science Citation indexed journals, over 70 conference publications and three book Chapters in her field of expertise and has attracted more than 25 M for her research from numerous competitive national and international research grants such as International Foundation for Science, Sweden, National Research Council, Sri Lanka and University of Sri Jayewardenepura research grants and WCUP grants to carry out research in her specialized field.
The Island published on 1st November 2018 recognized Prof. U. G. Chandrika’s new achievement as above. Visit online article on USJP names biochemistry scientist, Prof. Chandrika researcher of the year