Dr. Ferguson is an Environmental Analytical Chemist who joined Duke in 2009 after six years as an assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry at the University of South Carolina.
Research in the Ferguson laboratory is focused on development of novel methods for trace analysis of organic and nanoparticulate contaminants in the aquatic environment. Specifically, the laboratory uses high performance mass spectrometry techniques (e.g. UHPLC-Orbitrap MS/MS) to detect, identify, and quantify emerging contaminants (including endocrine disruptors, pharmaceuticals, and surfactants) in wastewater and drinking water. Another significant research thrust involves the development of sensitive trace analytical techniques for quantifying and characterizing single-walled carbon nanotubes in water, sediment, and aquatic organism tissues. For this work, near infrared fluorescence spectroscopy (NIRF) is used as a primary tool for resolving these novel nanoparticulate contaminants in highly complex environmental mixtures.
The analytical methods developed in the Ferguson laboratory laboratory (for both nanoparticles and organic contaminants) are applied to both process-oriented environmental chemistry experiments in the field and laboratory as well as to toxicity bioassays (including whole-organism assays and molecular endpoints). The overarching goal is to gain an increased understanding of how emerging contaminants are transported, transformed and induce deleterious effects within aquatic ecosystems.
School DivisionEnvironmental Sciences & Policy
- Ph.D., State University of New York, Stony Brook (2002)
- Collaboratory Applied Research Fellowship - DEQ awarded by University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill
- Establishing an Approach to PFAS Forensics and a PFAS Source Materials Forensic Library awarded by NuGlobal Solutions
- Assessment of parking garage washdown as a method for mitigating urban runoff of vehicle-derived contaminants to stormwater awarded by University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill
- Comprehensive additive release and bioaccessibility model for risk assessment of micro- and nano-plastics in the environment awarded by European Chemical Industry Council
- Fate of PU and PP microplastics and associated polymer additives in freshwater environments awarded by BASF Corporation
- Journal of Hazardous Materials Letters 3, ( ):
- The Science of the Total Environment 831, ( ): 154763
- Current Research in Toxicology 3, ( ): 100084
- Environmental Science & Technology 56, no. 2 ( ): 1162 - 1173
- Environmental Pollution (Barking, Essex : 1987) 287, ( ): 117299