Alexander J. Douglas

PhD Student

Alex Douglas

I began research for my thesis in Fall 2019. I am working to assemble a transcriptome of North American wood frog skin and isolate transcripts of novel antimicrobial peptides (AMPs). I will be investigating the effects of these AMPs on a panel of microbes, the epizootic amphibian pathogen Frog Virus 3, and cultured frog cells.

My previous research focused on the skin microbiome of the North American wood frog. I used high-throughput sequencing of a portion of the bacterial 16S rRNA gene to identify the microbes present on wood frog skin and determine whether the composition of the microbiome changes seasonally.

In my free time I enjoy cycling, weightlifting, experimental home-brewing, and hiking with my two dogs. I’m usually consuming some combination of tea, punk rock, food and podcasts.


  • Waterloo Pioneers of Microbiology Award (2020)
  • University of Waterloo Graduate Scholarship (2019)
  • NSERC Undergraduate Student Research Award (2019)


Douglas AJ, Hug LA and Katzenback BA. 2020. Composition of the North American wood frog (Rana sylvatica) bacterial skin microbiome and seasonal variation in community structure. Microbial Ecology.  Free preprint:


Bachelor of Science – Biochemistry / Biotechnology Specialization, Honours, Co-operative, University of Waterloo


Sports Coordinator – Biology Grad Students Association (2020/21)

University of Waterloo