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Elizabeth W. Alm

​​​​Photo of Elizabeth W. AlmProfessor
Biosciences 3407

​View her Personal Web Page HERE

  • ​A.B., Randolph-Macon Woman’s College, 1983
  • M.S., Ball State University, 1986
  • Ph.D., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1992
  • Postdoc, University of Illinois-UC, 1992-1996
​​​Teaching Areas
Microbiology, Medical Microbiology, Conservation Medicine, Vaccine Science
​​​Research Fields
Microbial ecology and environmental and public health microbiology
​​​Current Research Projects
Our lab applies microbiological and molecular techniques to the ecology of pathogenic microorganisms in the environment, especially aquatic environments. We want to understand sources and fates of pathogens in the environment. We have examined fecal indicator bacteria and antibiotic resistant bacteria at beaches, the ecology of E. coli in the extra-host environment, and avian influenza virus at migratory stopover sites. Current projects include investigations of the native microbial community of beach sand and adaptations of E. coli to extra-host environments.
​​​​Selected Publications

  • Alm, EW, QR Daniels-Witt, DR Learman, H Ryu, DW Jordan, TM Gehring, J Santo Domingo. 2018. Potential for gulls to transport bacteria from human waste sites to beaches. Science of the Total Environment. 615: 123-130.
  • Cloutier, DD, EW Alm, and SL McLellan. 2015. Influence of land use, nutrients, and geography on microbial communities and fecal indicator abundance at Lake Michigan beaches. Applied and Environmental Microbiology. 81(15): 4904-4913.
  • Alm, EW, D Zimbler, E Callahan, and E Plomaritis. 2014. Patterns and persistence of antibiotic resistance in fecal indicator bacteria from freshwater recreational beaches. Journal of Applied Microbiology. 117: 273-285.
  • Bauer, LM and EW Alm. 2012. Escherichia coli toxin and attachment genes in sand at Great Lakes recreational beaches. Journal of Great Lakes Research. 38(1): 129-133.
  • Alm EW, DM Gordon, and ST Walk. 2011. The ecological niche of E. coliIn: Bacterial Population Genetics: A Tribute to Thomas S. Whittam. ASM Press.  Washington, DC.
  • Walk, ST, EW Alm, DM Gordon, JL Ram, GA Toranzos, JM Tiedje, and TS Whittam. 2009. Cryptic lineages of the genus EscherichiaApplied and Environmental Microbiology. 75(20): 6534-6544.
  • Walk, ST, EW Alm, LM Calhoun, JM Mladonicky, and TS Whittam. 2007. Genetic diversity and population structure of Escherichia coli isolated from freshwater beaches. Environmental Microbiology 9(9): 2274-2288.
  • Alm, EW, J Burke, and E Hagan. 2006. Persistence and potential replication of the fecal indicator bacterium, Escherichia coli, in sand at Lake Huron. Journal of Great Lakes Research 32 (2): 401-405.
  • Alm, EW, J Burke, and A Spain. 2003. Fecal indicator bacteria are abundant in wet sand at freshwater beaches. Water Research. 37(16): 3978-3982. ​

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