Department of Comparative Medicine

Comparative Pathology Rotation

COMPARATIVE PATHOLOGY PROGRAMThe rotation includes both UWVDL Necropsy Service and Comparative Pathology Program training. Sites include DCM and the Histology and Imaging Core (HIC) located at UW Medicine South Lake Union (SLU) campus.

At any one time, there is at least one senior boarded pathologist with primary responsibility for one to two trainees.  The pathologist directly interacts with the trainee on a daily basis to discuss cases, see cases together, or participate pathology rounds (clinical vets and pathologists).  These pathology rotations are spread out over the entire three years of the program.


  • Develop an appreciation for the role of comparative pathology in biomedical research and humane care and use of laboratory animals.
  • Become proficient at rodent necropsy in a complete and systematic manner including appropriate specimen collection.
  • Practical understanding of necropsy procedures for larger mammalian species, birds, and fish. Proficiency in tissue collection from these species.
  • Accurate documentation of observations (gross findings) and correlations between gross findings and clinical presentation (interpretation).
  • Construct differential lists for common clinical presentations, gross lesions, and expected histologic findings.
  • Become familiar with the details and timing of trimming, embedding, sectioning, staining, and immunohistochemical techniques.
  • Identify normative macroscopic and microscopic anatomy of rodents and basic pathological processes (i.e. inflammation vs. neoplasia).