Director

Joan B. Rose, Ph.D.

Laboratory Director / Principal Investigator

Phone:  (517) 432-4412
Email: rosejo@msu.edu

Associate Research Professor

Nishita D’Souza, Ph.D.

Email: dsouzan1@msu.edu

Phone: (517) 432-8185
Fax: (517) 432-1699

Education:

Ph.D., Science & Technology (Water Microbiology), University of Mumbai, 2019.

M.Sc., Science (Microbiology), University of Mumbai, 2010.

B.Sc., Science (Microbiology), University of Mumbai, 2008.

Background and Research Interests:

Nishita D’Souza is an Associate Research Professor at the Water Quality, Environmental and Molecular Microbiology laboratory at Michigan State University. Nishita has a background in Water Microbiology and her doctoral work focused on evaluating bacterial surrogates for the validation of protozoa disinfection in ozone based water treatment systems. She has experience in developing microbiological methods and working with waterborne bacterial, viral and protozoan pathogens particularly in water and wastewater. Nishita is an experienced Microbiology Instructor and enjoys mentoring undergraduate and graduate students on various projects.

Nishita’s research at MSU focuses on Microbial Source Tracking to monitor river water quality. She is actively involved in the Waste Water Based Epidemiology surveillance studies for SARS CoV-2 virus lead by Dr. Joan Rose. Her research focuses on studying microorganisms through classical microbial culture based methods as well as advanced molecular methods such as qPCR and droplet digital PCR. Nishita works with Water utilities, Industry clients, Academic researchers and Global organizations to better understand water quality issues, in an effort to develop solutions to mitigate public health risks.

Lab Staff

Rebecca L. Ives, M.S.

Email: ivesrebe@msu.edu

Phone: (517) 432-8185
Fax: (517) 432-1699

Rebecca Ives’s work involves detection of microbes in natural and built environments, with a focus on pathogenic organisms.  Rebecca is a certified analyst for the detection of Cryptosporidium and Giardia in water.  Rebecca frequently works with environmental consulting agencies on reduction assessments for current and planned treatment systems as well as with the community members, academic agencies, government agencies, and non-governmental organizations to help protect and improve water quality.

Simran Singh, M.S.

Email: singhsi8@msu.edu

Simran received her Masters of Fisheries and Wildlife in June 2023 with Dr. Joan Rose. Her masters project included working with the Office of Naval Research in testing marine water/developing a concentrating method for viral pathogens in the netted bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncates) and California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) enclosures. She currently works in Dr. Joan Rose’s COVID-19 wastewater analysis lab at MSU.

Alex Tran

Email: tranale1@msu.edu

Spencer Kuehn

Email: kuehnspe@msu.edu

Postdoctoral Fellows

Weijing Ren, Ph.D.

Email: renwenji@msu.edu

Phone: (517) 432-8185

Ph.D., Crop, Soil & Environmental Sciences, Auburn University, 2023.

M.Sc., Fishery, Ocean University of China, 2018.

B.Sc., Science (Aquaculture), Shandong Agriculture University, 2015.

Background and Research Interests:

Weijing Ren’s doctoral work focused on a better understanding of microbial source tracking markers for the identification of fecal pollution sources in environmental waters. She has experience in evaluating different host-associated genetic markers for identifying fecal contamination sources in the natural environment, determining the persistence of genetic markers, as well as the changes of bacterial communities of sewage and cattle feces in freshwater and sediment by using qPCR and 16S gene amplicon sequencing. 

Weijing’s current research at Michigan State University (MSU) focuses on beach monitoring and Microbial Source Tracking projects and working on some wastewater surveillance projects by using qPCR and droplet digital PCR (ddPCR). She will work with Water utilities, Industry clients, Academic researchers, and Global organizations to better understand water quality issues, in an effort to develop solutions to mitigate public health risks.

Students

Emilia Emerson

Email: emerso67@msu.edu

Emily Zak

Email: zakemily@msu.edu

Office Support Staff

Sarah Holmes

Email: danns@msu.edu

Melissa Downs

Email: downsmel@msu.edu