University of Wisconsin–Madison

Kristen Pickett Research

Kristen Pickett, Ph. D.

Assistant Professor
Ph.D., University of Minnesota- Twin Cities

Please visit Prof. Pickett’s profile page for additional information.

Pickett Lab

Sensory Motor Integration Lab


Research Interests

The focus of this lab is in understanding the role of the brain in sensory and motor control of human movement. Our research is focused on examining the neural underpinnings of human movement in healthy individuals as well as individuals with movement disorders using a combination of clinical, biomechanical and neural imaging measures. The clinical/translational component of our research examines neurological populations that manifest both gross and fine motor control and sensory abnormalities such as those seen in Parkinson disease and dystonia.

Current Research


A multidisciplinary research team at the University of Wisconsin-Madison is working to build a registry of individuals with Parkinson disease (PD) as well as healthy individuals who are interested in participating in research studies. Participation in the registry does not require participation in any research studies, but rather gives researchers at the University permission to contact you to discuss your possible involvement in PD research. If interested, or for more information, please contact Dr. Kristen Pickett.


Since 2011, Dr. Pickett has worked as part of an annual interdisciplinary research clinic for children and young adults with Wolfram Syndrome. The goal of this research clinic is to understand the natural history of the disease process, particularly in its earliest stages and with an emphasis on the neurological aspects of Wolfram Syndrome. The primary focus of this team is to select appropriate markers of disease progression, which will be essential for establishing the efficacy of any future interventions through clinical trials.

Working in close collaboration with the Locomotor Control Lab under the direction of Dr. Gammon Earhart, Dr. Pickett and her colleagues are focused on the gross motor symptoms related to Wolfram syndrome, specifically gait and balance. To date, we have published the first ever papers addressing gait and balance in individuals with Wolfram syndrome. A third paper examining the longitudinal changes in gait and balance is currently in progress. Data collection will continue in July of 2014.

Related publications:

Pickett KA, Duncan RP, Hoekel, J, Permutt MA, MarshallB, Hershey T, Earhart GM (2012) Early presentation of gait impairment in Wolfram syndrome. Orphanet Journal of Rare Diseases, 7:92.

Pickett KA, Duncan RP, Paciorkowski A, Permutt A, MarshallB, Hershey T, Earhart GM (2012). Balance impairment in individuals with Wolfram syndrome. Gait and Posture, 36(3): 619-624.


For more information please visit

This research is supported by:

The Institute of Clinical and Translation Sciences at Washington University School of Medicine, The American Diabetes Association, The National Institutes of Health and The Jack and J.T. Snow Fund at Washington University School of Medicine (