The science of Molecular Biology is at the heart of human affairs. It impinges on all aspects of our lives, especially in the fields of Medicine and the Life Sciences. The interface between Genetics and Biochemistry is an exciting and rapidly growing area of science, which exploits the latest discoveries and technological developments of both disciplines. Genetech Molecular Diagnostics and School of Gene Technology seeks to introduce to Sri Lanka the very best benefits of such technological development, and at the same time disseminate knowledge and provide skills for Sri Lankans which will be marketable anywhere in the world.

Profile

Genetech is a multi-faceted institution and our activities can be broadly categorized into the following areas;

Molecular diagnosis of infectious diseases, genetic disorders and cancer screening

DNA typing for paternity testing and forensic casework

Teaching of basic to advanced Molecular Biology

Training of personnel involved in Gene Technology

Genetech is a sole proprietorship, (registration no. WA 43231). It is centrally located in Colombo 8. It is a fully equipped facility which meets international quality standards. It employs highly qualified personnel who are trained in their various specialties, and will also outsource experts with a proven record, from academia.

Genetech is headed by Dr. Maya B. Gunasekera, who obtained her doctorate from the National Institute of Medical Research, UK., and was a Senior Lecturer in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Colombo, She was responsible for introducing Molecular Biology and Gene Technology to the curriculum of the Faculty of Science, University of Colombo. She was the Chairperson for the Working Committee for Biotechnology at the National Science Foundation, Sri Lanka, and has obtained numerous felicitations for her achievements in scientific research, including the Presidential Research Bonus award, and the National Science Foundation Merit award for Biotechnology and the University of Colombo award for Excellence in Research. She has pioneered the use of DNA testing in forensic casework in Sri Lanka, and has been involved in every DNA typing test done in Sri Lanka. Recently she also developed a new molecular method for diagnosis of dengue.

DNA typing services of Genetech will be conducted by Senior Scientist Dr. Neil Fernandopulle, who has a doctorate in Molecular Biology, specifically in the field of forensic DNA typing. Dr. Fernandopulle, for his doctoral research, developed the human population databases for Sri Lanka. Dr. Fernandopulle has also been directly involved in almost all DNA typing tests done in Sri Lanka. He received the Postgraduate Research award from the Sri Lanka Association for the Advancement of Science.

Our molecular disease diagnostic methods are based on the latest knowledge of genomics, and bioinformatics. We employ the newest molecular methods, which are proven to be more sensitive, accurate and reliable than conventional methods of testing. We provide diagnostic services for bacterial, viral, and parasitic infectious diseases, genetic disorders, biochemical disorders, and predictive cancer screening. All our services will be subjected to a process of development, optimization and validation. There is no other such facility for Molecular Diagnostics in Sri Lanka.

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Our DNA typing services are provided by the only experts available in Sri Lanka in the field of forensic haemogenetics. They are the pioneers in DNA typing in Sri Lanka, and have been involved in every DNA typing test done in this country. DNA typing services are provided for a wide variety of casework, including forensic identification in criminal casework, and parentage testing.

Our teaching facility is aimed at providing a comprehensive knowledge of basic to advanced diagnostic molecular biology. This includes coursework by qualified lecturers drawn from Genetech and also from the University system. The teaching facility also provides well-structured practical training in the latest laboratory methods in Molecular Biology, including hands-on experience in nucleic acid extraction, purification, transfer techniques, gene cloning, polymerase chain reaction (PCR), electrophoresis, and data analysis, under the guidance of experienced and qualified instructors.

Our training program extends beyond the initial coursework in Molecular Diagnostics, into specialized areas where there are new applications, which require Molecular Biology skills. These areas include methods of Molecular Medicine for medical officers, Forensic DNA Typing for medico-legal personnel, and Laboratory Management for technical officers.

Copyright© Ruwan J Illeperuma . October, 2005 Genetech Molecular Diagnostics School of Gene Technology.