Dylan Comb

Research Associate II

Dylan comes to GMGI with a background in marine ecology, conservation and restoration science, applied to monitoring coastal ecosystem function and health. Having grown up locally on Cape Ann, Dylan has an affinity for all things shellfish. After completing a B.A. in environmental studies at the University of Vermont, he spent a few years ski-bumming and traveling before returning home to complete a M.S. in marine biology from Northeastern University. During his graduate research, Dylan focused on shellfish restoration in southern New England, assessing recruitment and comparing growth conditions of eastern oysters to better inform restoration science. Prior to joining GMGI, Dylan helped start an aquaculture farm, has worked as a NOAA fisheries observer, bicycle mechanic, snow maker, schooner deckhand, sailboat delivery captain and has volunteered in several marine science labs. Outside of work you can find him surfing, skiing, mountain biking or gardening.


978.879.4575 ext 104


Research Interests

How can we improve viral and disease detection in finfish and shellfish, and learn about factors that drive infection? How can we most efficiently assess and monitor fish populations using modern technologies? Where can we apply research to assist management of commercially valuable species and conserve the critical habitats in which they reside? Coming from a background in marine ecology and field biology, Dylan aims to utilize molecular techniques and cutting-edge genomic technology to address questions that impact coastal ecosystems surrounding Cape Ann and beyond.

As part of the fisheries research team, Dylan works in the field and lab to investigate disease prevalence in wild shellfish stocks, collaborating with state partners to improve management, safeguard natural resources, and benefit human health. He also plays an active role in developing environmental DNA technologies to assess local biodiversity and detect targeted fish and shellfish species.


2011 – B.A. Environmental Studies, University of Vermont
2016 – M.S. Marine Biology, Northeastern University, Advisors: Jon Grabowski & Randall Hughes

Prior Positions

2020: NOAA Groundfish Observer, At Sea Monitor for AIS inc., Gloucester, MA
2019-2020: Biologist/Co-Founder, Great Marsh Shellfish Company, Rowley, MA
2015-2016: Graduate Research Assistant, Grabowski & Hughes Labs, Northeastern University Marine Science Center, Nahant, MA
2015: Intern, Gates Lab, Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology, Kaneohe, HI
2014: Intern, Ocean Genome Legacy, Nahant, MA

Research Projects