My research interests are in environmental health microbiology, with a focus on water quality. I am developing novel tools and technologies to detect and track pathogens in water. I am also interested in evaluating impacts of non-point source pollution, and in evaluating the manner in which land-based activities (e.g. development, storm water management or agricultural practices) can affect human exposure to microbial contaminants. Overall, this research is leading to a greater understanding of how environmental conditions can affect human health, and how humans themselves influence this process.
Current areas of research include:
- Developing tools and technologies to measure microbial contaminants in water
- Studying recreational waters impacted by nonpoint source pollution
- Evaluating relationships between land use and water quality
- Modeling how storm events affect pathogen loading into waterbodies
- Characterizing the emergence and dissemination of antibiotic resistant bacteria, particularly MRSA
- Katie Overbey (BS 2014), Sarah Hatcher (PhD 2015), and Dr. Stewart publish findings that human sewage is contributing antibiotic resistant bacteria to beaches in the Galápagos Islands
- Welcome new graduate students Claire and Elizabeth!
- Dr. Stewart and David Holcomb (PhD in progress) are co-authors on the research protocol for the first controlled trial of onsite urban sanitation