Location: Bowdoin / Earth and Oceanographic Science / Research / Speakers and Panelists

Earth and Oceanographic Science

Speakers and Panelists

Melissa A. MillerMelissa A. Miller, DVM, Ph.D.

Wildlife Veterinarian Specialist
Marine Wildlife Veterinary Care and Research Center
Department of Fish and Game and
University of California, Davis
1451 Shaffer Rd.
Santa Cruz, CA 95060


Melissa Miller is a wildlife pathologist at the Marine Wildlife Veterinary Care and Research Center in Santa Cruz, she has a joint appointment with the California Department of Fish and Game and the University of California, Davis, Wildlife Health Center. Miller earned bachelors and master’s degrees in wildlife management and animal science at the University of New Hampshire, and completed her veterinary degree at UC Davis. She interned in small animal medicine and surgery at North Carolina State Veterinary School, and in anatomic pathology at the UC Davis Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital. Miller earned a PhD in comparative pathology from the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. She specializes in forensic analysis of marine wildlife. Her most recent interests are in the freshwater to marine connection between freshwater cyanobacterial blooms and toxic impacts on marine mammals.

Selected Relevant Publications 

2010  Miller M.A., Kudela R.M., Mekebri A., Crane D., Oates S.C., et al. Evidence for a Novel Marine Harmful Algal    Bloom: Cyanotoxin (Microcystin) Transfer from Land to Sea Otters. PLoS ONE 5(9): e12576.

2010  Wendte J.M., Miller M.A., Lambourn D.M., Magargal S.L., Jessup D.A., Grigg M.E. Self-mating in the definitive host potentiates clonal outbreaks of the apicomplexan parasites Sarcocystis neurona and Toxoplasma gondii. PLoS Genet. 6(12):e1001261.

2010  Miller M.A., Conrad P.A., Harris M., Hatfield B., Langlois G., Jessup D.A., Magargal S.L., Packham A.E., Toy-Choutka S., Melli A.C., Murray M.A., Gulland F.M., Grigg M.E. A protozoal-associated epizootic impacting marine wildlife: mass-mortality of southern sea otters (Enhydra lutris nereis) due to Sarcocystis neurona infection. Vet Parasitol. 172(3-4): 183-94.

2010  Rejmanek D., Miller M.A., Grigg M.E., Crosbie P.R., Conrad P.A. Molecular characterization of Sarcocystis neurona strains from opossums (Didelphis virginiana) and intermediate hosts from Central California. Vet. Parasitol. 170(1-2): 20-9.

2009 Jessup D.A., Miller M.A., Ryan J.P., Nevins H.M., Kerkering H.A., Mekebri A., Crane D.B., Johnson T.A., Kudela R.M. Mass Stranding of Marine Birds Caused by a Surfactant-Producing Red Tide. PLoS ONE 4(2): e4550.

2009 Miller M.A., Byrne B.A., Jang S.S., Dodd E.M., Dorfmeier E., Harris M.D., Ames J., Paradies D., Worcester K., Jessup D.A., Miller W.A. Enteric bacterial pathogen detection in southern sea otters (Enhydra lutris nereis) is associated with coastal urbanization and freshwater runoff. Vet Res. 41(1): 1.

2009 Wainwright, K.E., Lagunas-Solar M., Miller M.A., Barr B.C., Melli A.C., Packham A.E., Zeng N., Truong T., Conrad P.A. Radiofrequency-induced thermal inactivation of Toxoplasma gondii oocysts in water. Zoonos. & Pub. Health 57(2010): 74-81.

2009  Miller M.A., Barr B.C., Nordhausen R., James E.R., Magargal S.L., Murray M., Conrad P.A., Toy-Choutka S, Jessup D.A., Grigg M.E. Ultrastructural and molecular confirmation of the development of Sarcocystis neurona tissue cysts in the central nervous system of southern sea otters (Enhydra lutris nereis). Int. J. Parasitol. 39(12): 1363-72.

2009  Johnson C.K., Tinker M.T., Estes J.A., Conrad P.A., Staedler M., Miller M.A., Jessup D.A., Mazet J.A. Prey choice & habitat use drive sea otter pathogen exposure in a resource-limited coastal system. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 106(7):2242-7.

2008  Miller M.A., Miller W.A., Conrad P.A., James E.R., Melli A.C., Leutenegger C.M., Dabritz H.A., Packham A.E., Paradies D., Harris M., Ames J., Jessup D.A., Worcester K., Grigg M.E.. Type X Toxoplasma gondii in a wild mussel and terrestrial carnivores from coastal California: New linkages between terrestrial mammals, runoff and toxoplasmosis of sea otters. Int. J. Parasitol. 38(11): 1319-28. Cover article.