Researcher

Dr Chamini Jayamali Perera

My Expertise

I am an emerging research leader in the field of Pancreatic Research.  Aim of my research is to identify a biomarker for early detection of pancreatic cancer for improved survival outcomes. I investigate the mechanisms and factors underpinning pancreatic cancer-related diabetes (PCRD) using cell culture and animal models. This involves isolation of extracellular vesicles from cell secretions and mouse/human plasma and characterisation of the vesicle cargo to identify potential mediators of PCRD. I envision that the findings of this study will be a game changer in pancreatic cancer research.

Keywords

Fields of Research (FoR)

Gastroenterology and hepatology, Cancer cell biology, Tumour immunology, Neurosciences

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Biography

I am a Researcher/Lecturer working with the Pancreatic Research Group, South West Sydney Clinical Campuses/Ingham Institute, Liverpool. My current research focuses on early detection of pancreatic cancer through identification of possible biomarkers. This will be achieved by using in-vitro and in-vivo models of pancreatic cancer as well as 'omic' techniques to identify potential factors in small extracellular vesicles derived from pancreatic...view more

I am a Researcher/Lecturer working with the Pancreatic Research Group, South West Sydney Clinical Campuses/Ingham Institute, Liverpool. My current research focuses on early detection of pancreatic cancer through identification of possible biomarkers. This will be achieved by using in-vitro and in-vivo models of pancreatic cancer as well as 'omic' techniques to identify potential factors in small extracellular vesicles derived from pancreatic cancer and stellate cells. Once identified, the presence of lead candidate biomarkers will be tested in patients with new-onset diabetes/pancreatic cancer-related diabetes, which is now considered to be a group at 'high risk' of developing pancreatic cancer. 

Prior to joining the field of Pancreatic Research, I worked in the field of Neuroscience, where I completed my PhD in the field of Neuropathic pain in 2016 from School of Medical Sciences, UNSW Medicine. During my PhD, I investigated immune-modulatory approaches for the treatment of neuropathic pain in animal models. Then, in my first post-doctoral years, I worked in the Sensori-Motor Physiology and Therapeutics (SMPT) group in the Translational Neuroscience Facility, where I aimed to identify a potential neuroprotective compound to reduce excitotoxicity following traumatic brain injury.

 

 


My Grants

NHMRC Ideas Grant (2020-2024) - Pancreatic Cancer Related Diabetes (PCRD) -  Novel role of Pancreatic Stellate Cells

CONCERT seed grant (2020-2022) - Pancreatic cancer related diabetes-Elucidating its mechanism to enable diagnosis and improved treatment of pancreatic cancer

PanKind Early detection innovation grant (2022) - Deciphering the Exosomal RNA Cargo in Pancreatic Cancer-related diabetes using Transcriptmonics: A Novel Approach for Early Detection of pancreatic cancer


My Qualifications

PhD in Physiology and Pharmacology (UNSW), 2016

BVSc (Hons), 2008


My Awards

  1.  South West Sydney Clinical School ECR Award (2021)
  2. Australian postgraduate award (2011-2015)
  3. Australasian neuroscience society student travel award (2015)
  4. Paper of the month award for March, 2015 from school of Medical Sciences, University of New South Wales
  5. Spinal cord injury network travel grant in memory of Rosalind Nicholson (2015)
  6. Travel grant from school of Medical sciences, UNSW Australia  (2014)
  7. Travel grant from International association for the study of pain (2014)
  8. Australian neuroscience society student travel award (2014)
  9. PRSS conference travel funds from graduate research school, UNSW Australia (2013)
  10. Australian neuroscience society student travel award (2013)
  11. Astron scholarship for best performance in 1st, 2nd and 3rd BVSc in 2006
     

 


My Research Activities

I. Effects of exosomes derived from pancreatic stellate and cancer cells on islet cell dysfunction

II. Effects of exosomes derived from pancreatic stellate and cancer cells on insulin signalling

III. Effects of High Fructose Diet on impaired glucose tolerance/pre-diabetes and cancer progression in transgenic mouse model of pancreatic cancer

IV. Identification of protein, RNA, lipid and metabolic biomarkers in extracellular vesicular cargo using 'omic' techniques

V. Identification of possible candidate biomarkers of pancreatic cancer

 

 


My Research Supervision


Supervision keywords


Areas of supervision

ILP, Honours, Masters and PhD


Currently supervising

Honours and PhD students


My Engagement

I. Founder - Ingham Institute Public Speaking Club

II. Deputy Chair - Ingham Institute Postdoc Association

III. Committee member - MedECAN

IV. Member of Gastroenterological Society of Australia

V. Member of American Pancreatic Association

VI. Member of American Gastroenterological Association

VII. Member of International Society of Extracellular Vesicles

VIII. Member of Australian Pancreatic Club

IX. Mentor - UNSW Alumni Career Discovery Mentoring Program


My Teaching

Currently, I facilitate Medicine Phase 1 Scenario Groups (Ageing & Ending).

I have experience in teaching Anatomy, Physiology, Immunology, Microbiology and Biology for Medical, Medical Science and Science students.

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Location

South West Sydney Clinical Campuses/Ingham Institute
Level 4, 1 Campbell Street
Liverpool, 2170
NSW, Australia

Contact

0287389031