Defense Date


Document Type

Directed Research Project

First Advisor

Christopher Ehrhardt

Second Advisor

Michelle Peace

Third Advisor

Joseph Turner


Health risks associated with the use of e-cigarettes have become a concern in the last ten years, including the inhalation of volatile organic compounds, trace heavy metals, and cancer-causing agents. An additional, but poorly characterized health threat for e-liquids is the potential for bacterial contamination since the presence of pathogenic organisms can potentially cause disease from the inhalation of the microbes into the lungs. This work aims to investigate microbial growth and survival within the e-liquid matrix. Bacillus cereus T. strain and Escherichia coli were the chosen organisms for analysis of growth by absorbance, survival by viable plate counts, and characterization by fatty acid methyl ester profiling against nicotine and CBD liquids. The nicotine e-liquid matrix inhibits growth and survival in both organisms. The CBD e-liquid matrix inhibits growth and promotes sporulation in BcT.


© The Author(s)

Is Part Of

VCU Master of Science in Forensic Science Directed Research Projects

Date of Submission


Available for download on Tuesday, May 12, 2026