Associate Professor Severine Navarro is a Children’s Hospital Foundation Fellow and spokesperson to the Woolworth Centre for Childhood Nutrition Research. The focus of her research is the development of hookworm protein-based therapeutics for the treatment of chronic inflammatory diseases such as allergy, asthma, inflammatory bowel diseases and mood disorders. She has done her postdoctoral training at the Australian Institute of Tropical Health and Medicine at James Cook University in Cairns, where she identified and characterised hookworm-derived immunomodulatory compounds showing efficacy in experimental asthma and colitis, and presenting high translational potential.
She completed her tertiary education and obtained her first research experience in the USA at the Florida Institute of Technology and The University of Montana. She has obtained her PhD with high honours in 2010 at the Universite de Nice-Sophia-Antipolis, France where she used different approaches to induce and recruit regulatory T cells to the airways and suppress allergic inflammation. Prior to her PhD, she obtained a Master’s degree in Developmental Biology, Genetics and Immunology from the Universite de Nice-Sophia-Antipolis, France and based her thesis on the visualisation in vivo of peptide/MHC II complexes at the surface of antigen presenting cells.
Current QIMR Berghofer appointment
- 2018 – present: Team Head, Mucosal Immunology Laboratory
Other current appointments
- 2020 – Australia and New Zealand Society for Immunology Queensland Branch Councillor and Chair of the ASI Qld Branch Committee
- 2019 – present: member of the Steering Committee of the Woolworths Centre for Childhood Nutrition Research
- 2018 – present: Honorary Senior Fellow, School of Biomedical Sciences, University of Queensland
- 2018 – present: Adjunct A/Prof, School of Biomedical Sciences and Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation, Queensland University of Technology
- 2011 – 2017: Post-doctoral Research Fellow, Australian Institute of Tropical Health and Medicine at James Cook University, Australia
Current Area of Research
The Mucosal Immunology Group focuses on the development and the validation of novel therapeutic strategies for the prevention and treatment of chronic inflammatory diseases of the airway and the gut. Our interest lies in the manipulation of the microbiome to promote regulatory cell function and control inflammatory processes and tissue repair. Our strength is our integrative approach to the characterisation and understanding of the microbiome-mucosal-immune cross talk in both pre-clinical and clinical systems.
- Spokesperson and Member of the Internal Steering Committee for the Woolworths Centre for Childhood Nutrition Research
- Identification of hookworm Anti-Inflammatory Protein as a novel therapeutic agent in Chronic Inflammatory Diseases
- Co-Founder of Paragen Bio, a Biotechnology Company developing drugs for the treatment of autoimmune diseases
- Principal Investigator in the Breastmilk Hookworm Cohort Study that aims at determining the role of the Western Lifestyle on the development of allergy and Paediatric Inflammatory Bowel Disease.
Associate Professor Navarro recently visited Kelvin Grove State College and spoke to the parent body about the pivotal role the immune system plays and how microbiomes affect our body based on food and lifestyle choices.
Kelvin Grove State College Junior School Principal Damien Greig said “Severine articulated the complexities associated with our health system and some practical tips around food choices. She also discussed the benefits of strengthening our microbiomes by making good food choices (limiting fast food), being active and limiting stress.
She also looked at potential future medical innovations and the use of parasites to help the immune system. I would like to thank Severine for giving her time to share her work. The parents appreciated her sharing the wealth of knowledge she has gained over the many years of research.”
May 2019: A/Prof Navarro visited schools in Rockhampton, Gladstone and Tannum Sands as part of the Regional High-School lecture series, an outreach program for the benefit of Indigenous and non-indigenous students to present her work, discuss career opportunities in STEM.
February 2020: A/Prof Navarro was invited to join in the celebrations of the World Science Festival with the Queensland Museum and talk about her career in STEM in the Cool Job and Cool Careers initiative. In this interactive exhibit, students extracted their own DNA!
- 2017 – current: Society for Mucosal Immunology
- 2011 – current: Australasian Society for Immunology (ASI)
- 2017 – 2019: Australian Society for Medical Research (ASMR)
- 2019: Young Tall Poppy Award (Australian Institute of Policy and Science)
- 2019: Invited speaker Special Interest Group Mucosal Immunology, Australian and New Zealand Society for Immunology
- 2018: Mary McConnel Career Boost Program for Women in Paediatric Research
- 2018: Invited Speaker (18th Annual Retreat Brisbane Immunology Group, Gold Coast)
- 2017: Invited Speaker (Australasian Society for Immunology Annual Scientific Meeting, Brisbane)
- 2013: Invited Plenary Speaker (Parasitic Helminths: new Perspectives in Biology and Infection Annual Scientific Meeting, Hydra, Greece)
- 2013: Invited Speaker (Australasian Society for Immunology Annual Scientific Meeting, Wellington, New Zealand)
- 2012: Uniquest Trailblazer, Highly Commanded Award
- 2012: Australian Society For Parasitology (Scientific Research Exchange Award)
- 2011: Invited Scholar (IFReC-SIgN Winter School, Awaji, Japan)
- 2009: Fondation pour La Recherche Medicale (FRM) (Graduate Research Fellowship, France)
- 2010: PhD, Universite de Nice-Sophia-Antipolis, France
- 2006: Ms, Universite de Nice-Sophia-Antipolis, France
- 2002: B.Sc, Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne, Florida
- 2001: B.Sc, Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne, Florida