Melissa A. May

Contact Information



M.S. in Marine Science, University of San Diego 2007; B.S. in Zoology, Northern Arizona University 2004


I am a PhD candidate in Marine Biology working with Dr. Paul Rawson. I study how blue mussels (Mytilus edulis) tolerate low salinity stress, but am specifically interested in what makes larval stages more susceptible to environmental stress than juvenile and adult mussels. I use a combination of genetics, physiology, analytical chemistry, and microscopy to better understand how these animals respond to changes in salinity.

Research interests

I am interested in how marine organisms respond to environmental stress, particularly in the context of global climate change. I use a combination of genetic and physiological tools to monitor how blue mussels (Mytilus edulis) respond to salinity stress and how these responses vary with developmental stage.


  • ∗ Stamieszkin, K., M. May, and A. Chase. 2016. SIDEBAR. Student-led retreats for graduate student cohesion and career success. Oceanography 29: 80 – 81
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  • Sumich, J.L. and M.A. May. 2009. Scaling and remote monitoring of tidal lung volumes of young gray whales, Eschrichtius robustus. Marine Mammal Science 25: 221 – 228.For more information: Full Text