Professor Polly Roy
MSc PhD FMedSci
of Virology, Wellcome Trust Senior Investigator
Professor Polly Roy is a Professor of Virology in the Department of Pathogen Molecular Biology within the Infectious and Tropical Diseases Faculty. She received her PhD in Molecular Virology from New York University/Columbia University Medical School and continued to study RNA virology as a 3-year postdoc at the Waksman Institute, Rutgers University. She moved to the University of Alabama, Birmingham USA, where she established her own laboratory and became a full Professor, still working on different RNA viruses funded by multiple US grants. She came to the University of Oxford, UK, through a senior International Fogarty fellowship, where she gradually developed a second virology lab whilst maintaining her research lab at UAB until 2005. She moved as Virology Professor to the School in 2001, where she leads a large group of researchers.
For the last three decades, the predominant subject of Roy’s work, although not exclusively, has been the Bluetongue Virus (BTV), a complex layered virus that is a member of the Reoviridae family. Roy has made significant contributions to understanding the basic molecular and cell biology, atomic structure, mechanisms of virus entry, genome synthesis, RNA packaging, capsid assembly, egress and cell-to cell transmission of these viruses. Her multi-disciplinary approach and comprehensive research coverage has led to the successful development of improved diagnostic assays, more efficacious VLP vaccines, alternative Entry Competent Replication Abortive vaccine (ECRA) for BTV and African Horse sickness viruses (AHSV) and alternative therapeutic possibilities in addition to the fundamental scientific advance discovered.
Roy’s work has been recognised around the world and she has received many awards including; the Officer of the Order of the British Empire for service in Virus research; Fellowship of the Academy of Medical Sciences; the Indian Science Congress General President’s Gold medal, awarded by the Prime Minister of India and she was a Finalist of the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) ‘Innovator of the Year’ Award.
Professor Roy has been instrumental in the successful development of the Virology section of the MSc Medical Microbiology Course.
- Understanding the infection processes of the BTV at molecular level
- Cell entry and transcription activation of non-enveloped dsRNA viruses
- Defining the cis and trans acting factors required for assembly of infectious BTV
- RNA-RNA interactions and packaging
- Multivalent Reverse Genetics based ECRA vaccine for BTV and AHSV
Post-Doctoral Research Fellows and Assistants
Adeline Kerviel - PhD
Bjorn Mohl - PhD
Ampah Khamal Kwesi - PhD
Kinda Al-Shaikhahmed - PhD
Po-Yu Sung - PhD
Raghavendran Kulasegaran Shylini - PhD
Shah Kamranur Rahman - PhD
Thomas Labadie - PhD
Weining Wu – PhD
Edward Sullivan - PhD
Andrew Davies – B.Sc.
Joanne Kite – M.Sc.
CollaborationsProfessor Roy collaborates with a wide range of scientists and institutions around the world including the UK, US, Japan, China, and European countries (France, Germany and Spain).
The data generated through Roy’s research has resulted in over 300 publications in high impact journals, which are cited extensively. She has edited several virology research books and published numerous invited book chapters and reviews.
For a full list of Professor Roy publications, please click here -