Cross appointments

Does not hold any cross-appointments.

Research achievements

Research summary

Dr. Berard's research program focuses on female reproductive health, mucosal biology, immunology, and the microbiome. She collaborates with international human cohorts to study infections and diseases in the female genital tract, using multi-omic tools of systems biology and in vitro co-culture model systems.

She is a founding member of the THRIVE study umbrella, which investigates “The role of host-bacterial relationships and immune function in different vaginal environments.” Dr. Berard is currently a co-investigator on several CIHR and NIH-funded team studies that explore the role of the microbiome and mucosal immunology in conditions such as bacterial vaginosis, HPV infections and cervical cancer progression, infertility, HIV infection, and recurrent yeast infections. She also leads local clinical observational cohorts, recruiting participants for various THRIVE studies in collaboration with clinical partners at Shared Health, HSC, and Heartland Fertility Clinics.

The Berard lab utilizes complex high-throughput tools such as metaproteomics, sequencing, fluorescent imaging analysis, and metabolomics. This comprehensive approach allows them to characterize the microbiome's composition and function and associate these factors with host epithelial barrier and immune functions in the context of different reproductive health conditions.


While completing her PhD in Medical Microbiology Dr. Berard studied the differences in proteomic expression in viral infections (reovirus and herpes simplex viruses), performing a systems biology approach to study host-pathogenic interactions.

During her post-doctoral work, Dr. Berard studied mucosal biology in the context of HIV infection to determine mechanisms of pathogenesis and increased acquisition using similar systems biology approaches, SIV macaque models, co-culture, and vaginal epithelial barrier models.

As a research associate, she expanded her previous work to understand how the microbiome affects female reproductive health using multi-omic approaches including metaproteomics, metabolomics, transcriptomics, and flow cytometry, as well as multiple experimental bacterial co-culture assays to test mechanisms of barrier dysfunction, building the foundation for her work in the THRIVE studies, and building her own research program.

She trained in organizing clinical cohort studies during this period and lead logistical planning and execution of current local and international cohorts that are established and ongoing.


  • PhD, Medical Microbiology, University of Manitoba (2015)
  • Bachelor of Science (Honours), Biochemistry, University of Winnipeg (2006)



  • Travel awardee for the 2024 CIHR Institute of Infection and Immunity New Investigator Forum (NIF), King City, Toronto, Ontario ($2,814)


  • Conference attendance scholarship for oral presentation, Mucosal Systems Meeting (2018)
  • Registration scholarship, HIV Research for Prevention (HIVR4P)
  • Key Scientific Article Feature (J Virol. 2015 Dec;89(23):11954-64), Global Medical Discovery


  • Health Sciences Centre Studentship award, MHRC. $16,000/year
  • Award of Excellence (Silver Category) in the Health Research National Research Poster Competition, CIHR
  • Manitoba Graduate Scholarship, University of Manitoba, $16,000

Dr. Alicia Berard In the news

Contact us

Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences
260 Brodie Centre - 727 McDermot Avenue
University of Manitoba, Bannatyne Campus
Winnipeg, MB R3E 3P5 Canada