Dr. Verhougstraete's primary research has focused on environmental microbiology and water quality. To this aspect, Marc's focus is primarily on understanding the sources, occurrence, and transport of waterborne pathogens using fecal indicator organisms and molecular source tracking. Marc's research interests also include the integration of microbial water quality with hydrological catchment dynamics, landscape patterns, and Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessment to improve environmental management that protect human and ecosystem health. Recent efforts investigate the effects of intervention practices in the healthcare systems to reduce the transmission of pathogenic agents and associated healthcare infections. In all aspects of research, his primary objectives are to prevent human exposure to pathogenic organisms through increased scientific understanding of complex environments using a multifaceted toolbox approach.
Dr. Verhougstraete has worked as a primary researcher in environmental and water quality sciences specializing in nearshore, surface water quality, public health protection, and recently joined the Center for Rural Health in the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health. He is co-principal investigator and lead investigator for numerous projects resulting in manuscript publications, professional reports, and community outreach programs across the United States.