• Dobbs received his Ph.D. from Florida State University, held post-doctoral positions at SUNY Stony Brook and University of Hawaii, and joined the faculty at Old Dominion University in 1993.
  • Selected Publications

    Articles In Academic Journals

    Year Title
    2017 Bacterial diversity in ships’ ballast water, ballast-water exchange, and implications for ship-mediated dispersal of microorganismsAmerican Chemical Society. 1962-1972.
    2017 Revisiting the basis for US ballast water regulationsMarine Pollution Bulletin. p. 348-353.
    2016 A highly sensitive underwater video system for use in turbid aquaculture pondsScientific Reports.
    2016 Experimental demonstration of an Allee effect in microbial populationsBiology Letters.
    2016 The contribution of marine aggregate-associated bacteria to the accumulation of pathogenic bacteria in oysters: an agent-based modelEcology and Evolution. 7397-7408.
    2015 Failure of the public health testing program for ballast water treatment systemsMarine Pollution Bulletin. 29-34.
    2014 False positives in Biolog EcoPlatesTM and MT2 MicroPlatesTM caused by calciumJournal of microbiological methods. 20-24.
    2013 Bacterial colonization and extinction on marine aggregates: Stochastic model of species presence and abundanceEcology and Evolution. 4300-4309.
    2013 Pandemic serotypes of Vibrio cholerae isolated from ships’ ballast tanks and coastal waters: Assessment of antibiotic resistance and virulence genesMicrobial Ecology. 969-974.
    2013 Pandemic serotypes of Vibrio cholerae isolated from ships’ ballast tanks and coastal waters: Assessment of antibiotic resistance and virulence genes (tcpA and ctxA)Microbial Ecology. 969-974.
    2012 Differential utilization of carbon substrates by aggregate-associated and water-associated heterotrophic bacterial communitiesHydrobiologia. 969-974.
    2010 Theory of island biogeography on a microscopic scale: Are organic aggregates islands for aquatic pathogens?Aquatic Microbial Ecology. 1-13.
    2010 Theory of island biogeography on a microscopic scale: organic aggregates as islands for aquatic pathogensAquatic Microbial Ecology.
    2007 Après le déluge: Microbial landscape of New Orleans after the hurricanesProc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 9103-9104.
    2007 Dynamics and short-term survival of cyanobacteria species in ballast water—implications for HAB invasionsHarmful Algae. 519-530.
    2007 Green autofluorescence in dinoflagellates, diatoms, and other microalgae and its implications for vital staining and morphological studyAppl. Environ. Microbiol.. 2306-2313.
    2007 Green autofluorescence of dinoflagellate cysts can be used instead of primuline staining for cyst visualization and enumeration in sedimentsJ. Phycol.. 65-68.
    2007 Potential microbial bioinvasions via ships’ ballast water, sediment, and biofilmMar. Pollut. Bull.. 333-341.
    2006 Microbiological 'bottle effects' are not to be ignored (a comment on Mimura et al. 2005)Mar. Pollut. Bull. 1310.
    2006 Setting a size-exclusion limit to remove toxic dinoflagellate cysts in ships’ ballast waterMar. Pollut. Bull.. 259-263.
    2005 Do viruses affect the fecundity and survival of the copepod Acartia tonsa Dana?J. Plankt. Res.. 167-174.
    2005 Domestic and international arrivals of NOBOB (no ballast on board) vessels to lower Chesapeake BayMar. Pollut. Bull.. 560-565.
    2005 Potential invasion of microorganisms and pathogens via 'interior hull fouling': Biofilms inside ballast-water tanksBiol. Invas.. 969-982.
    2005 Ridding ships’ ballast water of microorganismsEnviron. Sci. Technol.. 259A-264A.
    2004 Multiplex PCR allows simultaneous detection of pathogens in ships’ ballast waterMar. Pollut. Bull.. 1096-1101.
    2004 Occurrence of intracellular crystals in leaves of Thalassia testudinumAquat. Bot.. 23-28.
    2004 Pfiesteria species identified in ships' ballast water and residuals: a possible vector for introductions to coastal areasHarmful Algae 2002. Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, Florida Institute of Oceanography, and Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO. 317-319.
    2004 Transport of the harmful bloom alga Aureococcus anophagefferens by ocean-going ships and coastal boatsAppl. Environ. Microbiol.. 6495-6500.
    2000 An evaluation of lipid- and morphometric-based indices of nutritional condition for early benthic stage spiny lobsters, Panulirus argus.  161-171.


    Year Title
    2011 Assessing the relationship between propagule pressure and invasion risk in ballast water.  Washington, D.C: National Academies Press.

    Conference Papers

    Year Title
    2015 Impact of climate warming and ocean carbonation on eelgrass (Zostera marina L.)

    Research Overview

  • Marine microbial ecology; microbiology of ships’ ballast tanks; disease ecology; bioelectrics; plastics in the environment
  • Grants

  • A joint mathematical and experimental study on cholera transmission dynamics  awarded by National Science Foundation 2014 - 2018
  • Microplastics As Vectors For Bacteria And Human Pathogens In Coastal Environments  awarded by VA Water Resources Research Center 2016 - 2017
  • Maritime Environmental Resource Center  awarded by University of Maryland 2012 - 2015
  • Acting for Scientists: Interdisciplinary pilot research to examine how actor-training tools may help prepare early career scientists for effective verbal communication of science  awarded by Old Dominion University office of Research 2014
  • Importation of baitworms and their live algal packing materials to the Mid-Atlantic  awarded by Maryland Sea Grant 2011 - 2014
  • Collaborative Research--Microscopic islands: Modeling the theory of island biogeography for aquatic pathogens colonizing marine aggregates  awarded by National Science Foundation 2009 - 2014
  • Scientific awareness through theatre: Inspiring young people to value scientific practice as we adapt to sea level rise and climate change  awarded by Old Dominion University office of Research 2011
  • Assessing, detecting, and managing the risks to the Great Lakes from non-indigenous microbes introduced by commercial ships  awarded by Great Lakes Protection Fund via Northeast–Midwest Institute 2007 - 2010
  • Evaluation of methods for biological control of bacteria in ships’ ballast water. Stage 1 – literature review  awarded by Sea Knight, LLC 2009
  • Pasteurization of packaged food with pulsed electric fields  awarded by Smithfield Foods 2008
  • Effects of non-equilibrium plasma on eukaryotic cells  awarded by Air Force Office of Sponsored Research 2005 - 2008
  • Screening of surrogate species for ballast water treatment  awarded by NSF International 2005 - 2007
  • Viability tests relevant to efficacy of ballast-water technologies—basic research  awarded by NOAA Ballast Water Technology Demonstration Program 2004 - 2007
  • Identifying, verifying, and establishing options for best management practices for NOBOB vessels  awarded by Great Lakes Protection Fund via Cooperative Institute for Limnology and Ecosystems Research, University of Michigan 2004 - 2006
  • Antibiotic resistance, plasmids, and the potential for lateral gene transfer in Vibrio cholerae found in ships' ballast water  awarded by NOAA National Sea Grant College program 2003 - 2006
  • Sea Grant Aquatic Nuisance Species Research Program: Antibiotic resistance, plasmids, and the potential for lateral gene transfer in Vibrio cholerae found in ships’ ballast tanks  awarded by National Sea Grant College Program 2003 - 2006
  • Aquatic nuisance species: Abundance of microorganisms and pathogens associated with biofilms inside ballast-water tanks and their capacity to act as vertical seed banks  awarded by National Sea Grant College Program 2001 - 2004
  • Assessment of transoceanic NOBOB vessels and low-salinity ballast water as vectors for nonindigenous species introductions to the Great Lakes  awarded by Great Lakes Protection Fund via Cooperative Institute for Limnology and Ecosystems Research, University of Michigan 2001 - 2004
  • Ballast residuals in NOBOB (NO Ballast On Board) vessels in Chesapeake Bay: Their biological and chemical characterization and a comparison with patterns in the Great Lakes  awarded by National Sea Grant College Program 2001 - 2004
  • Expertise Keywords

  • Oceanography : biological oceanography; marine microbial ecology; disease ecology
  • Education And Training

  • Ph.D. in Oceanography, Florida State University 1987
  • M.S. in Zoology, University of Connecticut 1981
  • A.B., Departmental Honors in Biology, Franklin & Marshall College 1976
  • Full Name

  • Frederick Dobbs