Rachel Allavena

Specialist Veterinary Anatomic Pathologist
School of Veterinary Science, University of Queensland
Deputy Head of School
School of Veterinary Science, University of Queensland
Associate Professor
School of Veterinary Science, University of Queensland

Brisbane, QLD

Contact me for

  • Mentoring
  • Sitting on boards or committees
  • Providing an expert opinion
  • Outreach activities
  • Conference presenting
  • Opportunities to collaborate


A/Prof Allavena is a registered specialist veterinary anatomic pathologist and is board certified by the American College of Veterinary Pathologists (2007). She has experience in toxicologic pathology, from work in the pharmaceutical industry in drug safety assessment. As a pathologist, her expertise is in the morphologic assessment and determination of pathogenesis of both naturally occurring and experimental disease. She has a special interest in development and validation of translational and comparative animal models of disease. Principally on pet dogs with natural cancer as a translational model for theranostic and immunotherapeutic development. Her research focus also includes the development, validation and analysis of traditional laboratory animals in biomedical research, with projects in biomedical device development, chemotherapy neuropathy, multiple sclerosis, herpetic encephalitis, campylobacter associated abortion, and others. Since commencing her academic career in 2011 she has lead or collaborated on over AUD $7 million of grant and contract funding for research. She enjoys talking about STEM to the public including school children and teachers. She has presented at the World Science Festival 'Cool Jobs', FEAST, Rotary National Youth Science Forum, and numerous teacher CPD events. She has written articles for 'The Conversation', the ABC and done numerous radio interviews for Australian national radio programs.She received a UQSVS Excellence in Clinical Research award 2018, Faculty of Science Excellence in Teaching Award from UQ in 2015 and was awarded a UQ Promoting Women Fellowship in 2016. She received three personal achievement and 1-research unit awards at Pfizer in 2009, and a Merck-Merial Veterinary Research Award for her PhD research in 2005.

A/Prof Allavena is a registered specialist by review of the Australian Veterinary Boards Council and Veterinary Surgeons Board of Queensland. She is an Associate Professor and is the Deputy Head of School at The University of Queensland School of Veterinary Science, based at Gatton campus.  She teaches Laboratory Animal Science, Anatomic Pathology and Toxicology. A/Prof Allavena served national secretary for the Australian Society of Veterinary Pathologists (2014-2016) and national secretary pathobiology chapter of the Australian and New Zealand College of Veterinary Surgeons (ANZCVS) from 2014- present. Dr Allavena is a clinical academic with a 30% research load, with 90 hours of formal teaching and 130 hours of clinical and flexible delivery teaching per annum, and a clinical caseload of approximately 500 cases per annum. She is currently the supervisor of 3PhD, 2DVetClinSci, and 2 MPhil students. With 1 PhD and 3 honours student, and 2 Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Pathologists completions. She has published over 30 C1 journal articles, including papers in Scientific Reports, J of Immunology, J of Virology, American Journal of Neuropathology, and Toxicology Pathology.