My research interests include inland fisheries management and aquaculture development. I have 25 years research experience on culture-based fisheries development in Sri Lankan reservoirs. This has included the introduction of co-management to improve the socio-economic status of fishing communities; the development of community-based strategies to increase fish seed production to meet requirements at the national level; and the development of web-based systems to collect information related to culture-based fisheries (www.infis.gov.lk) with data input and maintenance handled by fishing communities. I am a member of the NACA Technical Advisory Committee (2015-2018) and a life member of Sri Lanka Association for Fisheries and Aquatic Resources.
My research interests include aquatic animal health epidemiology, disease diagnostics and shrimp larval pathology. Since the early years of my career I have been interested in epidemiological studies on diseases and biostatistics. Presently I am working on active aquatic animal disease surveillance, with special reference to hepatopancreatic microsporidiasis, caused by Enterocytozoon hepatopenaei on the south east coast of India.
I have 24 years of research experience in aquaculture biotechnology. My major research interests include the development of molecular diagnostic tests for aquatic health management and the development of DNA markers for genetic characterisation of brackishwater shellfish and finfish. Presently, my research is focussed on exploring candidate genes for economically important traits in brackishwater organisms using biotechnology and bioinformatic tools, whole genome sequencing of shrimp and sequencing of viral shrimp pathogens using NGS techniques.
My research over the past 25 years has been focused on different aspects of marine crustacean husbandry and management with an emphasis on crustacean reproduction in relation to seed production and farming systems. My work has focussed on seed production of penaeid shrimps Penaeus monodon, P. indicus and mud crabs Scylla spp., their reproductive physiology and production systems. I have standardised and developed hatchery production of mud crab species and developed a model for land based and open water integrated multi-trophic aquaculture systems. I have been principal and co-investigator for many projects related to these disciplines.
My research priorities include fish immunology and disease diagnostics. I have nineteen years of research and teaching experience in fish health management, including development of immunodiagnostics and molecular diagnostics for fish and shrimp diseases. My research interests also include study of fish immunoglobulins and other molecules involved in fish immune response; development and use of fish cell lines for isolation and propagation of fish viruses; development of vaccines; and assessment of fish immune response to vaccination.
I have worked at CIBA since 1990 and currently head the Aquatic Animal Health and Environment Division, leading the research programme on aquatic animal disease surveillance with special reference to emerging issues in brackishwater aquaculture. I provide expert services to the Department of Animal Husbandry Dairying and Fisheries, Government of India, for aquatic animal quarantine, import of aquaculture inputs and related technical matters. This has included work on the import risk analysis for the introduction of Pacific white shrimp to India. I previously worked at the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI), Cochin beginning in 1984, and carried out research on the occurrence of heterotrophic microorganisms and mercury contamination in coastal and marine waters.
I joined the scientific service in 2008 and have since worked on diverse areas of aquatic microbiology and aquatic diseases. This has included understanding the virulence of bacterial pathogens, quorum sensing, and bacterial toxins. Presently, I am seeking to understand the lytic and lysogenic phages of aquatic origin and their role in controlling luminescent vibriosis in shrimp hatcheries. I have worked on pond microbial ecosystems and their manipulation using biofloc and periphyton-based systems. I have more than 30 publications in peer reviewed journals and serve as reviewer for journals including Aquaculture, Aquaculture Research and Aquaculture International.
I have been working in the Aquatic Animal Health and Environment Division of ICAR-CIBA since 2007. I have a rich experience in the epidemiology of shrimp and fish diseases, the pathobiology of vibriosis in shrimp culture, antibiotic residues in shrimp aquaculture, nanotherapy for Vibrio control, the pathobiology of parasitic diseases of fish and shrimp, and have contributed to disease diagnosis, control and prevention in aquaculture. I maintain interests in pathobiology and therapeutics of fish and shrimp diseases. I am an editorial member of BAOJ Aquaculture and the Journal of Bacteriology and Vaccine Research, and a certified reviewer of Fish and Shellfish Immunology and Microbial Pathogenesis.
My research interests are genetic diversity and disease diagnostics in aquaculture. I have worked in the area of reproductive biology and aquatic epidemiology of fish and shrimp diseases. Currently, I am involved in the study of the molecular aspects of diseases affecting algae. My previous responsibility involved fish health management in Malaysia as the competent authority, which involved disease surveillance, control and biosecurity. Furthermore, I was directly involved in several national and international projects on cold-chain management in seafood, probiotics in aquaculture, antimicrobial resistance in fisheries, development of national fish health strategy of Malaysia and preventing and managing Tilapia lake virus in Malaysia.
My research over twenty five years is focussed on aquatic invasive apple snails and other invasive alien species affecting food and nutrition security of smallholder farmers. With multidisplinary team members, I experiment and devise integrated crop management systems for ecologically sustainable management approaches against invasive alien species in the changing climate.
I have extensive work experience in innovative product development and promotion. I have been invited to share my work on invasive alien species and integrated pest management by many international organisations including FAO/IPPC, World Fish Center, CSIRO, JSPS, SP-IPM, IPPO, APEC, in 25 countries throughout the Asia-Pacifc region, Europe, Africa and South America. I have published four books and over 150 research articles on crop protection and production.
I am currently the TAA Pacific Coordinator; a CABI-SEA Associate; SAFE-Network Pacific Islands Coordinator; Technical Advisor on invasive apple snails to DELTAMED (Asociación de Deltas del Mediterráneo), Amposta, Spain; Senior Adviser on Invasive Apple Snails, NEURICE Project-Funded by European Commission, Spain; and Visiting Adjunct Professor at the University of the South Pacific, Fiji.