Saroopa Samaradivakara

Postdoctoral Researcher

Saroopa Samaradivakara, Ph.D. 



B.Sc, 2008, University of Bangalore, India

M.S., 2012, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka

Ph.D., 2017, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka


Postdoctoral Fellow, 2018-present, Michigan State University

Visiting Research, 2017-2018, University of Toledo, Ohio

DNA4Teachnologies LLC. DNA Database Coordinator, 2016-2018

Dr. Nevellie Fernando Teaching Hospital, Laboratory Services Consultant, 2016-2017

GENETECH Molecular Diagnostics (ISO 15189), Infectious Diagnostics Section, 2013-2015, Visiting Scientist II; 2010-2013, Scientist II; 2012-2013 Safety Officer

GENETECH Research Institute, Junior Scientist, 2008-2010

Commercial Links, Inc. (Virginia, USA), Market Research Analyst, 2012

Awards and Fellowships

  • Visiting Researcher Scholarship, Dept. of Chemistry & Biochemistry University of Toledo, USA, May  2017- May 2018
  • Visiting  Researcher Scholarship, Dept. of Medicinal and Biological Chemistry College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences University of Toledo, USA, July 2015- December 2015
  • Fulbright Fellowship – Nepal, Water-Energy-Food Nexus Regional Workshop, in collaboration with World Bank, The International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) and Nepal Water Conservation Foundation (NWCF), February 2015
  • International Visitor Leadership award – On the road in America, Farm to Table, United States Department of State, USA. June – July 2012
  • Overseas Special Training Programme -Travel Grant. National Science Foundation, Sri Lanka June 2011
  • Training scholarship, Kirkhouse Trust, England May 2011
  • Visiting  Researcher Scholarship, Smithsonian Institute, National Museum of Natural History, USA March 2010 – May 2010

Research Interests

I specialize in identifying bioactive natural products and developing pathogen detection tools for the advancement of sustainable agricultural practices. Backed by a molecular and chemistry background, I have been involved in a range of projects, including isolation and characterization of bioactive natural products, detection of human/plant pathogens and DNA barcoding. Further, with an interest in “Translational research” I seek to go beyond the goals of a “bench scientist” by seizing opportunities to serve as a scientific communicator by developing and implementing science capacity building projects, seminars and workshops on topics such as Ag biotechnology, biosafety and food security for local/international organizations. In so doing I hope to bridge the gap between the scientific and the non-scientific communities.

My current research work involves development of point-of-contact diagnostic DNA nanosensors for the detection and identification of plant pathogens from field samples. The nanoparticle assay will be integrated to the PhotosynQ platform ( for assessing and forecasting plant health. Furthermore, the work involves training and deployment of the hand-held diagnostic sensor to empower collaborating growers and field extension scientists.


Samaradivakara SP, Samarasekera R, , Handunnetti SM, Weerasena OVDSJ, Hamaashi AH, Slama JT, Taylor WR, Alhadidi Q, Shah ZA. Tillekeratne LMV (2018) A bioactive resveratrol trimer from the stem bark of Sri Lankan endemic plant Vateria copallifera. J. of Natural Products, Article ASAP DOI: 10.1021/acs.jnatprod.7b00892

Samaradivakara S, Kankanamge D, Senarath K, Ratnayake K, Karunarathne A. G protein γ (Gγ) subtype dependent targeting of GRK2 to M3 receptor by Gβγ. (2018) Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 503(1):165-170. doi: 10.1016/j.bbrc.2018.05.204.

Samaradivakara S. Chapter Five – Regulation of G Protein βγ Signaling. (2018) Int Rev Cell Mol Biol. 339:133-191. doi: 10.1016/bs.ircmb.2018.02.008.

Samaradivakara SP, Samarasekera R, Tillekeratne LMV, Handunnetti SM, Weerasena OVDSJ, Taylor WR, Alhadidi Q, Shah ZA. (2017) Bioactivities of n-hexane fraction of Vateria copallifera and GC–MS analysis of its phytoconstituents, J. of Industrial Crops and Products, 97:87-92.

Saroopa P Samaradivakara, Radhika Samarasekera, Shiroma M Handunetti, O.V.D.S. Jagath  Weerasena, (2016) Cholinesterase, protease inhibitory and antioxidant capacities of Sri Lankan medicinal plants, Industrial Crops and Products. Industrial crops and products, 83, 227- 234.

Samaradivakara SP., Hirimuthugoda NY., Gunawardana RHANM, Illeperuma R. J., Fernandopulle N. D. ,  De Silva A.D, Alexander P.A.B.D. (2012) Morphological variability of Tilapia populations in selected reservoirs present in Sri Lanka. Tropical Agricultural Research Vol. 23 (2): 105 – 116

List of Published Work in My Bibliography