Professor David Adams MD, FRCP, FMedSci

Professor David Adams

Institute of Immunology and Immunotherapy
Emeritus Professor of Hepatology

Contact details

Institute of Immunology and Immunotherapy
College of Medical and Dental Sciences
Medical School
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

David Adams was Pro-Vice-Chancellor and Head of College of Medical and Dental Sciences. The College has over 1,500 staff and brings together healthcare-related research and education including medicine, dentistry, nursing, midwifery and biomedical sciences.

David was a Director of Birmingham Health Partners, a strategic alliance between the University, University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust and Birmingham Women's and Children’s NHS Foundation Trust, bringing together clinical, scientific and academic excellence across an integrated medical and life sciences campus. 

In this video Professor David Adams describes his career to date, his passion for his research and how he enjoys working with postgraduate researchers from the UK and abroad.


  • Fellowship of the Academy of Medical Science 2000
  • Fellow of Royal College of Physicians 1997
  • MD Medicine 1990
  • Member the Royal College of Physicians 1984
  • MBChB 1981


David's clinical interests are transplant hepatology and autoimmune liver disease. Laboratory research interests are focused on mechanisms of immune-mediated liver disease. After initial training in hepatology in Birmingham he continued his immunology training with Dr Stephen Shaw at the Experimental Immunology Branch of the National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, USA before being appointed to the Chair of hepatology in Birmingham in 1997. He is currently an associate editor of the Journal of hepatology. He served on the scientific committee and governing board of the European Association for Study of the Liver between 2004-2007 and its Ethics committee 2010-2015. David was a councillor for the European Society for Organ Transplantation between 2004-2008. He was made a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences in 2000.

David has a long-standing interest in understanding how leukocyte-endothelial interactions regulate the recruitment of effector cells in chronic liver disease and his group have defined molecular mechanisms used by hepatic endothelium to control the entry of leukocytes from the blood. They have recently begun to use this information to develop new therapy for liver disease by targeting pathways involved in the recruitment of damaging effector cells or by promoting the recruitment of therapeutic cells including dendritic cells, stem cells and regulatory T cells that may be used to manipulate immune responses in patients in vivo.


Postgraduate supervision

David has supervised more than 25 PhD and MD students in various areas of immunology, including inflammatory liver disease, leucocyte trafficking and immune regulation.


Research Themes

Mechanisms of immune mediated liver injury, leucocyte trafficking and immune responses to liver cancer.

Research Activity

Laboratory research is focused on mechanisms of immune-mediated liver disease and leucocyte trafficking. Long-standing interest in understanding how leukocyte-endothelial interactions regulate the recruitment of effector cells in liver disease and how the local microenvironment within the liver modulates immune/inflammatory responses. Having defined molecular mechanisms that control the entry of leukocytes from the blood the group have started to use this information to develop cell and immunnotherapy for liver disease within the NIHR BRU Centre for Liver Disease. This includes not only blocking pathways involved in the recruitment of damaging effector cells but also promoting the recruitment of therapeutic cells including dendritic cells, stem cells and regulatory T cells that may be used to manipulate immune responses in patients in vivo.

Other activities

Consultant Physician, Liver Unit Queen Elizabeth Hospital

Editorial Boards

  • Associate Editor Liver 1997-2002
  • Associate Editor Gut 1998-2004
  • Associate Editor Clinical Science Reviews and Gastroenterology 1998-2010
  • Associate Editor Transplant International 2006-2010
  • Associate Editor Liver Transplantation 2009-2014
  • Associate Editor American Journal of Physiology 2009-2015
  • Associate Editor Journal of Hepatology 2009-

National Committees

Committees (current)

  • Clinical Interview Panel Wellcome Trust 2014-
  • Chair Academy of Medical Sciences Working Group on mentoring 2009-
  • Children’s Liver Disease Foundation Research Committee 2009-
  • Scientific Advisory Board MRC Centre for Transplantation at Kings College London 2009-
  • Medical Advisory Committee Sir Jules Thorn Trust 2012-
  • External Advisory Board King’s Health Partners Biomedical Research Centre 2014-
  • NIHR Trainees advisory panel 2014-
  • Member UK Healthcare Education Advisory Committee 2015-


Selected Publications (Since 2006)

Mora JR, Eksteen B, Iwata M, Song S-Y, Junt T, Senman B, Otipoby KL, Yokota A, Takeuchi H, Ricciardi-Castagnoli P, Rajewski K, Adams DH, Von Andrian UH. Generation of gut-homing IgA-secreting B cells by intestinal dendritic cells. Science 2006; 314(5802):1157-60. 

Lalor PF, Jun Sun P, Weston CJ, Martin-Santos A, Wakelam MJO & DH Adams. Activation of vascular adhesion protein-1 on liver endothelium results in an NFkB-dependent increase in lymphocyte adhesion. Hepatology 2007: 45:465-474. 

Holt AP, Haughton EL, Lalor PF, Filer A, Buckley CD & DH Adams.  Liver myofibroblasts regulate the infiltration & positioning of lymphocytes in the human liver. Gastroenterology; 2009; 136:705-14.

Eksteen B, Mora JR, Haughton EL, Henderson NC, Lee-Turner L, Villablanca EJ, Curbishley SM, Aspinall AI, von Andrian UH, Adams DH.  Gut homing receptors on CD8 T-cells are retinoic acid dependent & not maintained by Liver dendritic or stellate cells. Gastroenterology 2009; 137:320-9.

Oo YH, Weston CJ, Lalor PF, Curbishley SM, Withers DR, Reynolds GM, Shetty S,  Harki J, Shaw JC, Eksteen B, Hubscher SG, Walker LS, & DH Adams. Distinct roles for CCR4 & CXCR3 in the recruitment & positioning of regulatory T cells in the inflamed human liver. Journal of Immunology 2010; 184: 2886-98.

Aspinall AI, Curbishley SM, Lalor PF, Weston CJ, Blahova M, Liaskou E, Adams RM, Holt AP & DH Adams. CX3CR1 & VAP-1 dependent recruitment of CD16+ monocytes across human liver endothelium. Hepatology 2010; 51: 2023-2039.

Liaskou, E. Karikoski, M Reynolds GM, Lalor PF, Weston CJ, Pullen N, Salmi M, Jalkanen S & DH Adams. Regulation of MAdCAM-1 expression In humans & mice by amine oxidase activity. Hepatology 2011; 53: 661-72.

Shetty S, Weston CJ, Oo YH, Westerlund N,  Stamataki Z,  Youster J, Hubscher SG, Salmi M, Jalkanen SJ,  Lalor PF & DH Adams. CLEVER-1 mediates Treg transmigration across liver endothelium. Journal of Immunology 2011; 186: 4147-55.

Shetty S*, Bruns T*, Weston C, Stamataki Z, Oo Y, Long H, Jalkanen S, Hubscher S, Lalor PF, Adams DH.  Recruitment mechanisms of primary and malignant B cells to the human liver. Hepatology 2012; 56(4):1521-31. 

Liaskou E, Zimmermann HW, Li K, Oo YH, Suresh S, Stamataki Z, Qureshi O, Lalor PF, Shaw J, Syn W-K, Curbishley SM and DH Adams. Monocyte Subsets in Human Liver Disease Show Distinct Phenotypic and Functional Characteristics. Hepatology; 2013; 57(1):385-98. 

D Peppa, Gill US, Easom NJW, Reynolds G, Schurich A,  Micco L, Nebbia G, Singh HD, Weller IVD, Adams DH, Kennedy PTF, MK Maini. Upregulation of a death receptor renders antiviral T cells susceptible to NK cell mediated deletion. The Journal of Experimental Medicine 2013; 14;210:99-114. 

Weston CJ, Shepherd EL, Claridge LC, Rantakari P, Curbishley SM, Tomlinson JW,Hubscher SG, Reynolds GM, Aalto K, Anstee QM, Jalkanen S, Salmi M, Smith DJ, Day CP, DH Adams. Vascular Adhesion Protein-1 promotes liver inflammation and drives hepatic fibrosis. Journal of Clinical Investigation 2015 ;125(2):501-520. 

Resheq YJ, Li KK, Ward ST, Wilhelm A, Garg A, Curbishley SM, Blahova M, Zimmermann HW, Jitschin R, Mougiakakos D, Mackensen A, Weston CJ, Adams DH. Contact-dependent depletion of hydrogen peroxide by catalase is a novel mechanism of myeloid-derived suppressor cell induction operating in human hepatic stellate cells. J Immunol. 2015 Mar 15;194(6):2578-86. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.1401046. Epub 2015 Feb 9. PubMed PMID: 25667417. 

Zimmermann HW, Bruns T, Weston CJ, Curbishley SM, Liaskou E, Li KK, Resheq YJ, Badenhorst PW, Adams DH. Bidirectional transendothelial migration of monocytes across hepatic sinusoidal endothelium shapes monocyte differentiation and regulates the balance between immunity and tolerance in liver. Hepatology. 2015. 

Bruns T, Zimmermann HW, Pachnio A, Li KK, Trivedi PJ, Reynolds G, Hubscher S, Stamataki Z, Badenhorst PW, Weston CJ, Moss PA, Adams DH. CMV infection of human sinusoidal endothelium regulates hepatic T cell recruitment and activation. Journal of Hepatology. 2015 63:38-49. 

Hitchcock JR, Cook CN, Bobat S, Ross EA, Flores-Langarica A, Lowe KL, Khan M, Dominguez-Medina CC, Lax S, Carvalho-Gaspar M, Hubscher S, Rainger GE, Cobbold M, Buckley CD, Mitchell TJ, Mitchell A, Jones ND, Van Rooijen N, Kirchhofer D, Henderson IR, Adams DH, Watson SP, Cunningham AF. Inflammation drives thrombosis after Salmonella infection via CLEC-2 on platelets. J Clin Invest. 2015.

Rantakari P, Patten DA, Valtonen J, Karikoski M, Gerke H, Dawes H, Laurila J, Ohlmeier S, Elima K, Hübscher SG, Weston CJ, Jalkanen S, Adams DH, Salmi M, Shetty S. Stabilin-1 expression defines a subset of macrophages that mediate tissue homeostasis and prevent fibrosis in chronic liver injury. PNAS 2016; 113: 9298-9303.

Dufton NP, Peghaire CR, Osuna-Almagro L, Raimondi C, Kalna V, Chuahan A, Webb G, Yang Y, Birdsey GM, Lalor P, Mason JC, Adams DH, Randi AM. Dynamic regulation of canonical TGFβ signalling by endothelial transcription factor ERG protects from liver fibrogenesis. Nat Commun. 2017; 8:895 

Patten DA, Wilson GK, Bailey D, Shaw RK, Jalkanen S, Salmi M, Rot A, Weston CJ, Adams DH, Shetty S. Human liver sinusoidal endothelial cells promote intracellular crawling of lymphocytes during recruitment: A new step in migration. Hepatology 2017; 65: 294-309.

Trivedi PJ, Tickle J, Vesterhus MN, Eddowes PJ, Bruns T, Vainio J, Parker R, Smith D, Liaskou E, Thorbjørnsen LW, Hirschfield GM, Auvinen K, Hubscher SG, Salmi M, Adams DH, Weston CJ. Vascular adhesion protein-1 is elevated in primary sclerosing cholangitis, is predictive of clinical outcome and facilitates recruitment of gut-tropic lymphocytes to liver in a substrate-dependent manner. Gut 2018; 76: 1135-1415  2:

View all publications in research portal


Liver transplantation and autoimmune liver disease immune regulation, leucocyte trafficking and immune responses to liver cancer.

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