Professor Silverman is the currently the Mal and Lea Bank Chair in the Department of Cancer Biology, Lerner Research Institute at the Cleveland Clinic. He has a distinguished, nearly 40-year career studying the antiviral and anticancer activities of interferon, with almost 250 peer-reviewed publications. He is internationally recognized for his studies on the roles of the OAS-RNase L pathway in the suppression of viral infections and cancer. His studies have implications for virus mediated pathology and human survival from viral infections. In 1993, Professor Silverman’s laboratory reported cloning of RNase L, one of the key mediators of the antiviral and antitumor activities of IFN. His laboratory generated mouse models that are widely used by many labs worldwide for studying the antiviral activity of IFN. Recently, he has elucidated a pro-inflammatory role for RNase L, contributed to the structural determination of RNase L, and the mechanism by which coronaviruses and rotaviruses evade the interferon system by preventing RNase L activity.
He received his Ph.D. from Iowa State University and performed postdoctoral fellowships at the Roche Institute of Molecular Biology, the National Institute for Medical Research (Mill Hill, London) and the Imperial Cancer Research Fund Laboratories. He has had faculty positions at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS), Case Western Reserve University, Kent State University, Cleveland State University and the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine. He was an Eleanor Roosevelt International Cancer Research Fellow and a Fellow of the International Union Against Cancer. He delivered a Harold L. Stewart Lecture in Experimental Oncology (USUHS). He was the Research Honoree for the Standing Tall Award from the American Cancer Society. He was elected a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and of the American Academy of Microbiology (AAM). He is inventor on 16 patents concerning RNase L and related technologies. Over the years he has mentored 11 graduate students and 27 postdoctoral fellows.