The Department of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology (MBB) takes pride in contributing to the Biological Sciences by providing Science undergraduates with rigorous training in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology.
Molecular Biology and Biotechnology are two of the most novel areas of Science. The knowledge, skills and research experience in MBB are very useful to the global development in diverse applications such as medicine, food production and environmental management. Having the vision of harnessing MBB research and education in Sri Lanka, the Department of MBB was established in the Faculty of Science, University of Peradeniya in 1997. It is now a fully-fledged department, standing on its own, involved in the training of undergraduates as well as undertaking research in many areas of Molecular Life Sciences. Until 2005, the Department has contributed to the undergraduate education in the university by offering MBB as a Principal Subject in BSc General Degree Program. In 2006, the BSc Special Degree Program (currently known as Honors Degree) in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology was started and since then Department is growing in terms of number of students and other researchers who are benefited by the facilities available within the Department.
A student is introduced to the Basic Molecular Biological techniques by the courses offered in its curriculum. The Department of MBB conducts courses for students who enter the Faculty of Science from the Biological Science stream, so that they would follow either of the two Undergraduate Degree Programs, B.Sc. General Degree and B.Sc. Special Degree. The students are selected to follow the principal subject of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology in their Second Year. Students with higher academic performances (generally 10-15) are selected on competitive basis to follow the Honors Degree Program in the beginning of their Third Year and are allowed to continue to study for two more years to earn a BSc Honors Degree in MBB. The Honors degree curriculum includes a research project, which provides the students an opportunity to obtain first-hand experience in conducting research. The students of the General Degree Program continue their studies in the chosen two or three subject areas including MBB to graduate with a BSc General Degree after three years in the University. In addition, BSc. Special Degree in Biology is jointly offered by the Departments of MBB, Botany and Zoology.
Currently, the department of MBB is comprised of 04 Academic Staff members. Namely Prof. S.D.S.S. Sooriyapathirana (Head), Prof. R.G.C.S. Rajapakse, Prof. P. Samaraweera and Ms. M.P.C.S. Dhanapala.
The research interests of the academic staff cover areas in stress tolerant genetic markers in rice, purification of industrially important enzymes from algae and fungi, Hydrolytic enzymes in Sri Lankan carnivorous plants, protease inhibitors from Sri Lankan plants, human and mouse Kallikreins, anti-microbial activities of modified fabrics, genetic diversity of Rhizobia, dissection of genes underlying the complex traits in eukaryotes using molecular and statistical genomic approaches, DNA Informed Breeding and plant tissue culture.
Also, we are equipped with 09 Temporary Academic Staff members, one Technical Officer and 03 Academic Support Staff members to fulfill our mission of providing students with theoretical and applied knowledge and skills in MBB. At last, but not least we are humbly proud to state that over 95% of our MBB Honors Degree graduates are successfully engaged in their PhD studies in world-reputed universities all over the world.