Maria Pickering

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Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Voice: (860) 486-1882
Fax: (860) 486-6364
E-mail: maria.pickering@uconn.edu

Mailing address:
75 N. Eagleville Road, U-3043
Storrs, CT 06269


Contents

EDUCATION

Ph.D. (2006–2012)
Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Connecticut
Dissertation Title: “Species boundaries and temporal patterns of the tapeworm fauna of sharks in the genus Squalus” (Major Advisor: Janine N. Caira)

B.A. (2000–2004)
Biology, College of Creative Studies, University of California, Santa Barbara
Tropical Biology Program (Spring 2003): UC Education Abroad Program, Monteverde, Costa Rica

RESEARCH EXPERIENCE

2007–2012 Summers, Graduate Research Assistant, University of Connecticut
Parasitology, Dept. of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology

2004 September–2006 June, Senior Testing Assistant, Althea Technologies, Inc., San Diego, CA
Molecular Biology (Disease diagnostics via gene expression profiles), Dept. of Analytical Services

2004 Summer, Smithsonian Intern, Smithsonian Environmental Research Center (SERC)
Marine Invasions and Parasitology, Dr. Greg Ruiz and Dr. Whitman Miller, SERC, Edgewater, MD

2003 Summer, REU; 2003 Fall–2004 Spring, Independent Study, University of California, Santa Barbara
Ecological Parasitology, Dr. Armand Kuris, Dept. of Ecology, Evolution, & Marine Biology

2002 Summer, REU, Pasoh Forest, Malaysia
Ecology of Plants, Dr. Steve Hubbell, Dept. of Ecology, University of Georgia

2001 Summer REU; 2000 Summer, Microbiology Laboratory Assistant, University of Georgia
Marine Microbiology, Dr. Mary Ann Moran, Dept. of Marine Sciences

2000 June, Field Assistant, Barro Colorado Island, Panama
Primate Ecology, Dr. Katharine Milton, University of California, Berkeley


TEACHING EXPERIENCE

Guest Lecturer, University of Connecticut
Invertebrate Zoology; 7 lectures, Fall 2010

Laboratory Instructor and Lecture Assistant, University of Connecticut
Biology 1102: Foundations in Biology August 2006–December 2007, Spring 2009—Excellence in Teaching Award 2008
Parasitology Fall 2009, Fall 2011—Excellence in Teaching Award 2010
Invertebrate Zoology Fall 2010

Lecture Assistant, University of Connecticut
Evolution Spring 2008
Biology of the Vertebrates Fall 2008


PUBLICATIONS

  • Caira, J.N., Pickering, M., Schulman, A.D., and N.J. Hanessian IV. Two new species of Echinobothrium (Cestoda: Diphyllidea) from batoids off South Africa.Submitted to Comparative Parasitology May 2012.

  • Pickering, M. and J.N. Caira. 2012. A new hyperapolytic species, Trilocularia eberti n.sp. (Cestoda: Tetraphyllidea), from Squalus cf. mitsukurii (Squaliformes: Squalidae) off South Africa with comments on its development and fecundity. Folia Parasitologica. 59(2):107-114.

  • Rodriguez, N., Pickering, M. and J. N. Caira. 2011. Echinobothrium joshuai n. sp. (Cestoda: Diphyllidea) from the Roughnose Legskate, Cruriraja hulleyi (Rajiformes: Rajidae), off South Africa. Comparative Parasitology. 78(2): 306-311.

  • Pickering, M. and J. N. Caira. 2008. Calliobothrium schneiderae n. sp. (Cestoda: Tetraphyllidea) from the Spotted estuary smooth-hound shark, Mustelus lenticulatus, from New Zealand. Comparative Parasitology. 75(2): 174-181.

  • Kuris, A.M., Hechinger, R.F., Shaw, J.C., Whitney, K., Aguirre, L.M., Boch, C., Dobson, A.P., Dunham, E.J., Fredensborg, B.L., Huspeni, T.C., Lorda, J., Mababa, L., Mancini, F., Mora, A., Pickering, M., Talhouk, N., Torchin, M.E., and K.D. Lafferty. 2008. Parasite and free-living biomass in three estuaries implications for ecosystem energetics. Nature. 454: 515-518.

  • Chen, Q., Vansant, G., Oades, K., Pickering, M., Wei, J.S., Song, Y.K., Monforte, J., and J. Khan. 2007. Diagnosis of the Small Round Blue Cell Tumors Using Multiplex Polymerase Chain Reaction. Journal of Molecular Diagnostics 9(1): 80-88.

  • Poretsky, R. S., Bano, N., Buchan, A., LeCleir, G., Kleikemper, J., Pickering, M., Pate, W.M., Moran, M., and J.T. Hollibaugh. 2005. Analysis of Microbial Gene Transcripts in Environmental Samples. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 71:4121-4126.


PRESENTATIONS AT SCIENTIFIC MEETINGS

(Oral presentations unless otherwise noted; * indicates presenting author)


2012

  • Pickering, M.* and J. N. Caira. Seasonal dynamics of the cestode fauna in spiny dogfish populations off the coast of Rhode Island. The Helminthological Society of Washington 707th Meeting. Quinnipiac University, Hamden, Connecticut. April 2012. Runner-up Best Student Presentation.
  • Pickering, M.* and J. N. Caira. Seasonal dynamics of the cestode fauna in spiny dogfish populations off the coast of Rhode Island. National Meeting of the American Society of Parastiologists. Richmond, Virginia. July 2012.
  • Katz, T.*, J. N. Caira, and M. Pickering. Reevaluation of the genus Caulobothrium (Cestoda; Tetraphyllidea) results in the discovery of remarkable morphological features. National Meeting of the American Society of Parastiologists. Richmond, Virginia. July 2012.
  • Bernot, J.P.*, J. N. Caira and M. Pickering. David and Goliath: Examination of additional complexity in the genus Calliobothrium (Cestoda: Tetraphyllidea) in smoothhound sharks of the genus Mustelus (Carcharhiniformes: Triakidae). National Meeting of the American Society of Parastiologists. Richmond, Virginia. July 2012.

2011

  • Pickering, M.* and J. N. Caira. Trilocularia: An example of challenges in tetraphyllidean species designations. New England Association of Parasitologists. Salve Reginia University, Newport, Rhode Island. November 2011.
  • Pickering, M.* and J. N. Caira. Trilocularia: An example of challenges in tetraphyllidean species designations. 7th International Workshop on Cestode Systematics. Lawrence, Kansas, July 2011.
  • Pickering, M.* and J. N. Caira. A cautionary tale about the (mis)use of distinctive morphological characters in species indentification: a case study using the cestode genus Trilocularia. 2nd International Congress of Invertebrate Morphology. Harvard University, Boston, Massachussetts. June, 2011. (Invited)
  • Pickering, M.* and J. N. Caira. . Expansion of the cestode genus Trilocularia: An investigation across shark hosts and oceans. National Meeting of the American Society of Parastiologists. Anchorage, Alaska. June 2011.
  • Bernot, J.P.*, J. N. Caira and M. Pickering. Cestode morphology as predicted by elasmobranch relationships: Calliobothrium in smooth hound sharks of the genus Mustelus. National Meeting of the American Society of Parastiologists. Anchorage, Alaska. June 2011.
  • Schulman, A.D.*, M. Pickering, and J. N. Caira. New diphyllideans from the spotted skate (Raja straeleni) from South Africa. National Meeting of the American Society of Parastiologists. Anchorage, Alaska, June 2011. (Poster presentation)

2010

  • Pickering, M.* and J. N. Caira. Examining the newly circumscribed species boundaries in the sharks Squalus acanthias and Squalus suckleyi with cestodes from 3 disparate localities: the Atlantic Ocean, the Black Sea, and the Pacific Ocean. 12th International Congress of Parasitology, Melbourne, Australia. August 2010. (Poster presentation)
  • Pickering, M.* and J. N. Caira. Examining the cestode taxon Trilocularia in 2 host shark species and across 3 disparate localities. New England Assocition of Parasitologists. University of Massachussetts, Amherst. November 2010.
  • Pickering, M.* and J. N. Caira. A cestode test of newly circumscribed species boundaries in the sharks Squalus acanthias and Squalus suckleyi. National Meeting of the American Society of Parastiologists. Colorado Springs, Colorado, July, 2010.

2009

  • Pickering, M.*, J. N. Caira and G. Costa. Characterization of the cestode fauna of a deepwater squaliform shark from Madeira. National meeting of the American Society of Parasitologists. Knoxville, Tennessee, June 2009.

2007

  • Pickering, M.*, J. N. Caira Spiral intestine cestodes in the Piked dogfish (Squalus acanthias) across space and time. Annual meeting of New England Association of Parasitologists, Boston College, Massachusetts, October 2007.
  • Pickering, M.*, J. N. Caira Spiral intestine cestodes in the Piked dogfish (Squalus acanthias) across space and time. The First North American Parasitology Congress, Annual meeting of the American Society of Parasitologists. Mérida, Mexico, June 2007.


AWARDS

2012 Runner-up—Best Student Paper Competition, The Helminthological Society of Washington

2011 Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship, The Graduate School, University of Connecticut

2011 Marc Dresden Student Travel Grant, American Society of Parasitologists, Anchorage, Alaska

2010 Excellence in Graduate Student Teaching Award (Upper Division Course—Invertebrate Zoology & Parasitology), Dept. of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, University of Connecticut

2010 Marc Dresden Student Travel Grant, American Society of Parasitologists, Colorado Springs, Colorado

2008 Introductory Biology Graduate Student Teaching Award, Dept. of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, University of Connecticut

2008 Honorable Mention—NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program

2006–2012 University Multicultural Fellowship, The Graduate School, University of Connecticut

SERVICE

American Society of Parasitologists:

2009–2010 Graduate Student Representative to Council
2010 (June): Organizer and Chair, Graduate Student Symposium, ASP annual meeting, Colorado Springs, Colorado, Title: “Accessing Parasites from the Comfort of Your Own Home: An Introduction to 2 Online Parasite Databases


SOCIETY MEMBERSHIPS

American Society of Parasitologists

New England Association of Parasitologists

The Helminthological Society of Washington

Connecticut Entomological Society


RESEARCH INTERESTS

Parasitology, biodiversity, taxonomy, and systematics. Ecology and evolutionary biology of elasmobranch cestodes.

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