Erin Adams is an expert in molecular immunology. She explores how the immune system distinguishes between healthy and diseased tissue. She specifically focuses on gamma delta T cells, understanding their role in the immune response process and why they proliferate during infection. Prof. Adams is principal investigator of the Adam's Lab at UChicago which focuses on understanding how events at the molecular level (i.e. protein-protein or protein-ligand interactions) allow the immune system to differentiate between self and non-self. The projects in the lab generally focus on nonconventional T cell recognition, such as that of γδ, MR1-restricted and CD1-restricted T cells. Adam's Lab is also interested in nonclassical or MHC-like proteins and how/if they present ligands. They approach these questions at many different levels: genetics, protein biochemistry, structure, biophysics, function and cell biology/imaging.
In addition, she has received multiple honors, including the Cancer Research Foundation Junior Investigator Award. She has been named a Searle Scholar and a Kavli Fellow.