Makeda Mills


I am interested in how various microbial communities may facilitate or support coral health in challenging environments. I hope to use this knowledge to explore the development of effective probiotics for corals.

  • Investigating variations in microbial populations above and below the aragonite saturation horizon (ASH) within the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands and Emperor Seamounts.
  • Comparing the microbial inhabitants, including potential pathogens, on shallow water scleractinian corals in the Kahekili Beach area impacted by effluent from treated wastewater discharge.

Selected Publications

Achberger, A. M., Doyle, S. M., Mills, M. I., Holmes, C. P., Quigg, A., & Sylvan, J. B. (2021). Bacteria-Oil Microaggregates Are an Important Mechanism for Hydrocarbon Degradation in the Marine Water Column. Msystems, 6(5), e01105-21.


Texas A&M University: Biological Oceanography, M.S.

University of the Virgin Islands: Biology, B.Sc.


  • 08/2023 – Present       Dr. Dionel E. Avilés '53 and Dr. James E. Johnson '67 Graduate Fellowship
  • 08/2023 – Present       Susanne ’77 and Steve Leininger Scholarship Fund
  • 08/2022 – 05/2023      J. Raymond Jones Scholarship
  • 08/2021 – 05/2022      Ralph Rayburn’69 Texas Sea Grant Scholarship
  • 08/2020 – 05/2023      National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship
  • 08/2020 – 05/2023      Louis & Elizabeth Scherck Scholarship

Additional Information

Advisor: Dr. Jason Sylvan

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