John Rowe

Contact Information

John Rowe

Professor Emeritus

  • Emeritus


Dr. Rowe was originally trained as a chemist but after taking his first microbiology course he fell in love with these invisible organisms. He immediately changed majors in his senior year and continued pursuing graduate degrees in a specific area of microbiology involving the biochemistry of microbes. As a postdoctorate he focused on mechanisms of nutrient transport and the physiology of anaerobic respiration. These areas have continued to be the focus in his laboratory today as he uses bacteria as simple organismal systems within which he can address fundamental biological questions. Dr. Rowe has been active in the American Society of Microbiology and especially in generating various support systems and activities for the student membership. As an academic he has taught both graduate and undergraduate students and considers teaching and research as integral rather than separate entities.

Faculty Perspective

I think that an education in Biology at UD is a unique experience because it is a community experience in the truest sense. The curriculum itself represents only part of the process of obtaining a B.S. Our students are part of a learning community connected by interdisciplinary links with nanotechnology, chemistry, physics, engineering, bioinformatics, mathematics and general education. Service learning experiences are the norm and take place in health, ecological or legal communities and are supported through our Learn, Lead, and Serve program.

The discipline of biology has undergone a revolution in the last 15 years and continues to be a mushrooming area of career opportunity. Biology has become so relevant in recent years as a result of the tremendous advances in biotechnology and an explosion of environmental problems that the demand attention. Thus, employment for biologists will continue to increase in the distant future. Because of these continually emerging opportunities, we have built career development into our curriculum and offer a Career Seminar program that brings in speakers working in traditional and nontraditional areas for biologists. We often draw on our own graduates as speakers. Our graduates are in constant demand by the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, food, and health industries. In addition, 55% of our graduates choose to continue their education in medical schools, graduate schools, veterinary schools, law schools, and schools of public health, to name a few.

Research Interests

  • Anaerobic microbial metabolism
  • Biochemical and molecular microbiology
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa infection in cystic fibrosis patients
  • Microbial nitrate metabolism

Selected Publications

Hassett DJ, Cuppoletti J, Trapnell B, Lymar SV, Rowe JJ, Yoon SS, Hilliard GM, Parvatiyar K, Kamani MC, Wozniak DJ, Hwang SH, McDermott TR, Ochsner UA. "Anaerobic metabolism and quorum sensing by Pseudomonas aeruginosa biofilms in chronically infected cystic fibrosis airways: rethinking antibiotic treatment strategies and drug targets." Adv Drug Deliv Rev. 2002 Dec 5;54(11):1425-43. Review.

Yoon SS, Hennigan RF, Hilliard GM, Ochsner UA, Parvatiyar K, Kamani MC, Allen HL, DeKievit TR, Gardner PR, Schwab U, Rowe JJ, Iglewski BH, McDermott TR, Mason RP, Wozniak DJ, Hancock RE, Parsek MR, Noah TL, Boucher RC, Hassett DJ. "Pseudomonas aeruginosa anaerobic respiration in biofilms: relationships to cystic fibrosis pathogenesis." Dev Cell. 2002 Oct;3(4):593-603.