Christine J. Picard

Assistant Professor, Biology


2005-2010 Ph.D., Department of Biology, West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV

2000-2002 M.Sc., Department of Chemistry, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario

1996-2000 B.Sc., Biology/Chemistry, University of New Brunswick, Fredericton, New Brunswick

Current Research

The lab’s main research interests concern the population genetics and genomics of forensically important insects. As with many other taxa, the growing availability of high-throughput sequencing makes it much easier to understand the genetic control and natural variation in carrion insect phenotypes. This in turn should allow us to develop more accurate death investigation methods.  Lab research would continue investigating the population genetic structure of the carrion arthropod community (through AFLP analysis) and go on to the development of new genetic loci to answer some basic forensic entomological questions.  The lab is mainly focused on the implementation of molecular techniques, but some general entomology and ecology will be associated with the projects.    Students interested in next generation sequencing technologies, population genetics and/or bioinformatics would be a welcome addition.

Select Publications

GM Dembinski, CJ Picard (2014) “Evaluation of the IrisPlex DNA-based eye color prediction tool the United States.”  Forensic Science International: Genetics. 9:111-117.

CJ Picard (2013) “First record of Chrysomya megacephala Fabricius (Diptera: Calliphoridae) in Indiana, U.S.A.” Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington 115: 265-267.

CJ Picard, K DeBlois, F Tovar, JS Johnston, AM Tarone. (2013)  “Increasing precision in PMI estimates: What’s sex got to do with it?”.  Journal of Medical Entomology, 50: 425-431.

CJ Picard, JD Wells (2012) “A test for carrion fly full siblings: a tool for detecting postmortem relocation of a corpse.”  Journal of Forensic Sciences, 57(2):535-538.

CJ Picard, JS Johnston, AM Tarone (2012) “Genome sizes of forensically relevant Diptera” Journal of Medical Entomology, 49(1):192-197.

CJ Picard, MH Villet, JD Wells (2012) “Amplified fragment length polymorphism confirms reciprocal monophyly in Chrysomya putoria and Chrysomya chloropyga: a correction of reported shared mtDNA haplotypes”  Medical and Veterinary Entomology, 26: 116-119.

AM Tarone, CJ Picard, C Spieglman, DR Foran (2011) “Population and temperature effects on Lucilia sericata (Diptera: Calliphoridae) body size and minimum development time.” Journal of Medical Entomology, 48(5): 1062-1068.

CJ Picard, JD Wells (2010) “The Population Genetic Structure of North American Lucilia sericata (Diptera: Calliphoridae) and the utility of genetic assignment methods for reconstruction of postmortem corpse relocation.”  Forensic Science International, 195: 63-67.

PB Sampson, CJ Picard, S Handerson, TE McGrath, M Domagala, A Leeson, V Romanov, DE Awrey, D Thambipillai, E Bardounoitis, N Kaplan, JM Berman, HW Pauls  (2009)  “Sprio-Naphthyridinone piperidines as inhibitors of S. aureus and E. coli enoyl-ACP reductase (FabI).”  Bioorganic and Chemistry Letters 19: 5355-5358.

 CJ Picard, JD Wells (2009) “Survey of the Genetic Diversity of Phormia regina (Diptera: Calliphoridae) Using Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphisms.”  Journal of Medical Entomology, 46:664-670.