Sashika graduated with a B.Sc. Special Degree in Botany in 2015 from the University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka, securing First Class (Hon) and also awarded two Gold Medals by the University, in recognition of the performance at the B.Sc. Special Degree Examination. Since then she worked as a Teaching Assistant (2015) and a Research Assistant (2016) at the Department of Botany, University of Peradeniya.
She moved to Australia in 2017 upon receiving the ARTP scholarship and commenced her PhD at National Wine & Grape Industry Centre, Charles Sturt University. She is currently working with Prof. Chris Steel on a project studying biocontrol properties of Aureobasidium pullulans volatile organic compounds.
Specialisation: Plant pathology
Focus Area: Production of volatile organic compounds (VOC) with biocontrol properties by Aureobasidium pullulans
My PhD research aims to chemically characterize VOC of A. pullulans and identify compounds with antifungal properties to control Alternaria solani and Botrytis cinerea, two fungal pathogens of tomatoes and grapes. This involves Solid Phase Micro Extraction-Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry SPME-GC/MS and various techniques of plant pathology. The mode of action of the VOCs produced by A. pullulans will be investigated using a combination of techniques involving microscopy and biochemical assays with the aim of fulfilling gaps of existing knowledge of antimicrobial activity of VOCs.
Madhupani Y.D.S. and Adikaram N.K.B. (2016). Delayed incidence of stem-end rot and enhanced defenses in Aureobasidium pullulans-treated avocado (Persea americana Mill.) fruit. Journal of Plant Diseases and Protection (Accepted for publication).
Madhupani, Y.D.S. and Adikaram, N.K.B. (2015). Biological control of avocado (Persea americana Mill.) stem-end rot using Aureobasidium pullulans. Abs. Proceedings of the Peradeniya University International Research Sessions, Sri Lanka, 5th & 6th November 2015. Vol. 19 pp: 372.