Shashi Goonetilleke

Dr Shashi Goonetilleke

Research Officer

Wirltu Yarlu Aboriginal Education

Division of Academic and Student Engagement

I am passionate about incorporating DNA information into plant breeding. Before my PhD, my main focus was to develop molecular tools for cereal breeding. My research activities at this stage were primarily based on development of low to medium throughput molecular markers for detecting the nematode resistance and for other economically important traits in wheat and barley. When I embarked on a PhD project to develop molecular tools for almond, I became interested in applying molecular information in fruit and nut breeding to increase the selection efficiency.

I also have a passion for the self-incompatibility in plants. I am interested in exploring the self-incompatibility to develop genetic tools to increase the productivity in self-incompatible perennials and understanding the function and regulation of the self-incompatibility.

  • Appointments

    Date Position Institution name
    2017 Research Officer University of Adelaide, Adelaide
    2017 - 2017 Research Assistant Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation- Australia (Waite Campus)
    2009 - 2013 Technical Officer University of Adelaide, Adelaide
    2003 - 2009 Research Assistant Tea Research Institute of Sri Lanka
    2003 - 2003 Teaching Assistant University of Peradeniya, Kandy
    2000 - 2001 Teaching Assistant University of Peradeniya, Kandy
  • Awards and Achievements

    Date Type Title Institution Name Country Amount
    2017 Award Dean’s Commendation for Doctoral Thesis Excellence University of Adelaide Australia
    2016 Award Runner-up oral presentation, Workshop on Floral structure and Self-incompatibility International Society for Horticultural Science Spain
    2015 Award Best presentation, 3-Minute Thesis competition School of Agriculture, Food and Wine, The University of Adelaide, Australia Australia
    2013 Scholarship Australian Postgraduate Award University of Adelaide Australia
    2007 Award Merit award for the Translation Centre for Policy Alternatives- Colombo, Sri Lanka Sri Lanka
    2006 Award Gold medal for the best presentation Tenth Anniversary International Symposium, University of Sabaragamuwa, Sri Lanka Sri Lanka
    2001 Scholarship Asian Development Bank Scholarship for Postgraduate Studies Asian Development Bank Sri Lanka
  • Language Competencies

    Language Competency
    English Can read, write, speak, understand spoken and peer review
    Sinhala; Sinhalese Can read, write, speak, understand spoken and peer review
    Tamil Can read, write, speak and understand spoken
  • Education

    Date Institution name Country Title
    2013 - 2017 University of Adelaide Australia PhD
  • Research Interests

  • Journals

    Year Citation
    2020 Goonetilleke, S. N., Croxford, A. E., March, T. J., Wirthensohn, M. G., Hrmova, M., & Mather, D. E. (2020). Variation among S-locus haplotypes and among stylar RNases in almond. Scientific Reports, 10(1), 583-1-583-15.
    2017 Goonetilleke, S., March, T., Wirthensohn, M., Walker, A., & Mather, D. (2017). Genotyping-by-sequencing in almond: SNP discovery, linkage mapping and marker design.. G3 : Genes, Genomes, Genetics, 8(1), 1-25.
    DOI Scopus8 WoS7 Europe PMC1
    2009 Goonetilleke, W., Priyantha, P., Mewan, K., & Gunasekare, M. (2009). Assessment of genetic diversity of tea (Camellia sinensis L.O. Kuntze) as revealed by RAPD - PGR markers. Journal of the National Science Foundation of Sri Lanka, 37(2), 147-150.
    DOI Scopus5
    2008 Goonetilleke, W. N., Priynatha, P. G., & Mewan, K. M. (2008). An assessment of genetic relationships in VP teas and old seedling teas in Sri Lanka using RAPD Markers. Journal of Tea Science, 73(1), 39-48.
  • Conference Papers

    Year Citation
    2016 Goonetilleke, S., Croxford, A., Wirthensohn, M., March, T., & Mather, D. (2016). Molecular markers for high-throughput detection of a self-fertility (Sf) allele in almond. In Acta Horticulturae Vol. 1231 (pp. 143-150). Murcia. Spain: International Society for Horticultural Science.
    2009 Ariyaratne, P. N., Mewan, K. M., Goonetilleke, W. N., & Priyantha, P. G. (2009). Study of genetic relationships of tea (Camellia sinensis (L.) O. Kuntze) using SSR markers and pedigree analysis. In Proceedings of 9th Agricultural Symposium, Wyamba University of Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka.
    2006 Goonetilleke, W. N., Priyantha, P. G., Mewan, K. M., & Gunasekare, M. T. (2006). Assessment of genetic diversity in Sri Lankan tea (Camellia sinensis (L.) O. Kuntze) as revealed by RAPD-PCR markers. In enth Anniversary International Symposium, University of Sabaragamuwa. Sabaragamuwa, Sri Lanka.
  • MiSeq Pilot the Possibilities Program, IIlumina, Australia, 2014, for resequencing the self-incompatibility locus (S locus) of almond, Goonetilleke, S and Mather, D

  • Memberships

    Date Role Membership Country
    2014 - 2016 Board Member Postgraduate Association for Waite Students, School of Agriculture, Food & Wine, Waite Campus, University of Adelaide Australia
    2014 - ongoing Member International Society for Horticultural Science
  • Position: Research Officer
  • Phone: 83136655
  • Email:
  • Fax: 83130432
  • Campus: Waite
  • Building: Plant Research Centre, floor 1
  • Org Unit: School of Agriculture, Food and Wine

Connect With Me
External Profiles