Amy R. Sapkota
Director, CONSERVE Center of Excellence
Director, UMD Global STEWARDS NSF Research Traineeship (NRT)
Dr. Sapkota is a Professor of Environmental Health, Director of the CONSERVE Center of Excellence, and Director of the UMD Global STEWARDS NSF Research Traineeship. She is an environmental microbiologist and exposure assessor, was a Fulbright Scholar in Nepal and has secured or helped to secure over $44 million in external funds. She received a PhD and an MPH from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and the Yale School of Public Health, respectively.
SPH | Room 2234P
- Maryland Institute for Applied Environmental Health
- CONSERVE Center for Sustainable Water Reuse, Food and Health
Areas of Interest
Water Reuse, Food and Health; Environmental Microbiology; Exposure Assessment; Food-Energy-Water Nexus; Next-Generation Sequencing
Dr. Sapkota is the Director of CONSERVE: A Center of Excellence at the Nexus of Sustainable Water Reuse, Food & Health, a multi-institution Center funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture (2016-2021). She is also the Principal Investigator of UMD Global STEWARDS (STEM Training at the Nexus of Energy, Water Reuse and Food Systems), a National Research Traineeship (NRT) program funded by the National Science Foundation (2018-2023).
The mission of CONSERVE is to facilitate the adoption of transformative on‐farm water treatment solutions that enable the safe use of nontraditional irrigation water (e.g. reclaimed water, return flows) on food crops. The overarching goal of the UMD Global STEWARDS NSF NRT is for graduate trainees to become adept at working and communicating across food-energy-water (FEW) disciplines, enabling transformative discoveries that can only be realized through transdisciplinary approaches and systems-based thinking.
Dr. Sapkota received a PhD in Environmental Health Sciences from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and an MPH in Environmental Health Sciences from the Yale School of Public Health. After completing her doctorate, she engaged in post-doctoral fellowships at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and the Environmental Microbial Genomics Group at Ecole Centrale de Lyon in Lyon, France.
She is the recipient of the 2012 Eric Mood New Professional Award from the Yale School of Public Health that recognizes the career of a Yale alumnus/a who demonstrates outstanding leadership potential and creativity in the practice of public health. Dr. Sapkota is also the recipient of the 2015 Jerry P. Wrenn Outstanding Service Award, the 2018 Research and Development Award and the 2019 Leda Amick Wilson Mentoring Award from the University of Maryland School of Public Health. In 2017, she represented the Core Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program and the United States as a Fulbright Senior Researcher in Chitwan, Nepal.
Dr. Sapkota's research interests lie in the areas of environmental microbiology, environmental microbial genomics, exposure assessment and environmental epidemiology, and she has published over 70 journal articles in these areas. Her research group evaluates the complex relationships between environmental microbial exposures and human infectious diseases, with a special focus on assessing the public health impacts associated with water reuse. Much of her group's work seeks to 1) characterize the microbiome of recycled water sources and 2) understand how direct and indirect exposures to these sources can impact the human microbiome and infectious disease risk.
Dr. Sapkota is seeking talented undergraduates, graduate students and post-docs to join her group. In particular, her lab will have openings for Master's and Doctoral students entering in the 2021-2022 academic year. She currently serves as a mentor to students in the following programs: MPH, MS and PhD in Environmental Health Sciences.
PhD, Environmental Health Science, 2005
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
MPH, Environmental Health Science, 1999
Yale School of Public Health
BS, Biology, 1999
University of Maryland College Park
MIEH 309 Environmental Health Research
MIEH 690 UMD Global STEWARDS: Experiential Exploration of Innovations at the Nexus of Food, Energy, and Water Systems (INFEWS)
MIEH 699 UMD Global STEWARDS: Seminal Findings, and Research and Policy in Progress at the Food, Energy, Water Nexus
MIEH 773 Foodborne, Waterborne and Airborne Infectious Diseases
MIEH 785 Internship in Public Health
MIEH 786 Capstone Project in Public Health
Phi Sigma National Honor Society, 1994-97
Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society, 1995-97
Golden Key National Honor Society, 1995-97
Phi Beta Kappa, University of Maryland College Park, May 1997
Gamma Award, Phi Beta Kappa, University of Maryland College Park, May 1997
National Network for Environmental Management Studies Fellowship, US EPA, 1998
Outstanding Employee Performance Award, Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, 2000
Cornelius W. Kruse Award for Outstanding Graduate Studies, Johns Hopkins, 2002
Delta Omega, Alpha Chapter, Honorary Public Health Society, 2005
Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Pre-doctoral Fellowship in Biological Sciences, 2001-2005
Eric Mood New Professional Award, Yale School of Public Health, 2012
Honoree, 6th Annual University-Wide Celebration of Scholarship & Research, University of Maryland College Park, May 2013
Honoree, 7th Annual University-Wide Celebration of Scholarship & Research, University of Maryland College Park, May 2014
Honoree, 8th Annual University-Wide Celebration of Scholarship & Research, University of Maryland College Park, May 2015.
Jerry P Wrenn Outstanding Service Award, University of Maryland School of Public Health, May 2015.
Honoree, 9th Annual University-Wide Celebration of Scholarship & Research, University of Maryland College Park, May 2016
Fulbright Senior Researcher Scholarship, Nepal, U.S. Department of State, January to June 2017
Research and Development Award, University of Maryland School of Public Health, May 2018.
Honoree, 11th Annual University-Wide Celebration of Scholarship & Research, University of Maryland College Park, May 2018.
Exemplary Researcher Recognition, Inaugural Maryland Research Excellence Celebration, University of Maryland College Park, February 2019.
Leda Amick Wilson Mentoring Award, University of Maryland School of Public Health, June 2019.
Sapkota AR†. 2019. Water reuse, food production and public health: Adopting transdisciplinary, systems-based approaches to achieve water and food security in a changing climate. Environmental Research, 171, 576-580.
Chopyk J*, Nasko CJ, Allard S**, Callahan MT, Bui A, Ferelli AMC*, Chattopadhyay S, Mongodin EF, Pop M, Micallef S, Sapkota AR†. 2020. Metagenomic analysis of bacterial and viral assemblages from a freshwater creek and irrigated field reveals temporal and spatial dynamics. Science of the Total Environment, 205:135395.
Malayil L*, Chattopadhyay S, Kulkarni P**, Hittle L, Clark PI, Mongodin EF§, Sapkota AR§. 2020. Mentholation triggers brand-specific shifts in the bacterial microbiota of commercial cigarette products. Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology. 104; 6287–6297.
Murray R**, Cruz-Cano R, Nasko D, Blythe D, Ryan P, Boyle M, Wilson S, Sapkota AR†. 2020. Association between Private Drinking Water Wells and the Incidence of Campylobacteriosis in Maryland: An Ecological Analysis Using Foodborne Diseases Active Surveillance Network (FoodNet) Data (2007-2016). Environmental Research [In Press].
Craddock HA*, Chattopadhyay S, Rjoub Y, Rosen D, Grief J, Lipchin C, Mongodin EF, Sapkota AR†. 2020. Antibiotic-resistant Escherichia coli and Klebsiella spp. in greywater reuse systems and pond water used for agricultural irrigation in the West Bank, Palestinian Territories.
Environmental Research. 188:109777. Malayil L**, Ramachandran P, Chattopadhyay S*, Cagle R, Hittle L, Ottesen A, Mongodin EF, Sapkota AR†. 2020. Metabolically-active bacteria in reclaimed water and ponds revealed using bromodeoxyuridine DNA labeling coupled with 16S rRNA and shotgun sequencing. Water Research. 184;116185.
Chopyk J*†, Nasko D, Allard S**, Bui A*, Pop M, Mongodin EF, Sapkota AR. 2020. Seasonal dynamics in taxonomy and function within bacterial and viral metagenomic assemblages recovered from a freshwater agricultural pond. Environmental Microbiome. 15;18.
Kulkarni P**, Olson ND, Bui AQ, Bradshaw RN, Del Collo LP, Hittle LE, Handy ET, Paulson JN, Ghurye J, Nasko DJ, East C, Kniel KE, Chiu PC, Mongodin EF, Pop M, Sharma M, Sapkota AR†. 2020. Zero-valent iron sand filtration can reduce human and plant pathogenic bacteria while increasing plant growth promoting bacteria in reclaimed water. Frontiers in Environmental Science. [In Press].
Zhu L**, Jiang C, Panthi S*, Allard SM**, Sapkota AR, Sapkota A†. 2021. Impact of high precipitation and temperature events on the distribution of emerging contaminants in surface water in the Mid-Atlantic, United States. Science of the Total Environment. 755;2:142552.