Stephen Polyak PhD


Dr. Polyak's research focuses on the interactions between cells and viruses, with emphasis on hepatitis C virus (HCV) and HIV. One focus of his molecular virology and cell biology laboratory involves characterizing innate antiviral and inflammatory responses to virus infection. He also has a program focusing on how natural products combat chronic inflammation. Current efforts are focused on the liver protective natural product silymarin, generically known as milk thistle extract, on hepatic inflammation. Another project focuses on how natural products like silymarin reduce chronic immune activation associated with HIV infection. Research on the synthetic antiviral compound known as Arbidol (a.k.a. Umifenovir) has revealed that the drug is a broad spectrum antiviral compound, which inhibits infection of cells by many viruses, including HCV, Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV), certain Arenaviruses, and Ebola virus.


University of Washington School of Medicine Laboratory Medicine Research Professor
University of Washington Global Health and Microbiology Adjunct Research Professor