Assoc. Prof Allen graduated from the University of Melbourne in Medicine and specialised in Ophthalmology. She then sub-specialised in Vitreoretinal surgery. Assoc. Prof Allen is a Research Fellow at the Centre for Eye Research Australia, with a clinical appointment at the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital, as head of the Vitreoretinal Surgical Unit.
Assoc. Prof Allen was a Principal Investigator on the Australian Research Council (ARC) through its Special Research Initiative in Bionic Vision Science and Technology grant to Bionic Vision Australia (BVA). She is the co-recipient of an NHMRC excellence award.
Assoc. Prof Allen was key to the developing the surgical technique for the suprachoroidal retinal prosthesis, resulting in the first clinical trial of this device in three human patients. For this she was shortlisted for an Australian Eureka prize for interdisciplinary research. She has subsequently led a second trial of a fully implantable device with four patients.
She has presented over 60 conference posters and talks and has published more than 90 peer reviewed journal articles.