John Adams, MD

Director, Orthopaedic Hospital Research Center

Research Interests

  • Sterol / Steroid Hormone Intracellular Trafficking, Action and Metabolism

  • Vitamin D and Human Immune Function

  • Bone

  • Stem Cells

  • Innovative Approaches for the Recruitment and Training of Clinical Scientists

  • Biomedical Informatics


John Adams, MD Overview

Dr. Adams is board certified in internal medicine and endocrinology, diabetes and metabolism. Dr. Adams has focused his research on sterol synthesis and metabolism, vitamin D and steroid hormone action, and osteoporosis. His research has been published in numerous peer-reviewed journals, including Nature, Science, Cell, Endocrinology, Molecular Endocrinology, Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, Journal of of Clinical Investigation, Annals of Internal Medicine and The New England Journal of Medicine. Dr. Adams serves as Associate Editor for the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research and on the editorial board for the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.

Dr. Adams is an active member of several professional committees on the national scene. He currently serves on the Skeletal Biology Development and Disease, the Orthopedic Study Section for grant review at the National Institute for Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Diseases of the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Adams received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Kansas and his medical degree from the University of Kansas School of Medicine. He completed his fellowship in endocrinology and internal medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School.


  • MD, University of Kansas School of Medicine, Alpha Omega Alpha (third year), 1974

  • BA, Cum Laude, University of Kansas, 1971

Professional Certification

  • Diplomat, Leadership Strategies for Evolving Health Care Executives, Harvard School of Public Health, 2011

  • Diplomat, Endocrinology and Metabolism, American Board of Internal Medicine, 1985

  • Diplomat, American Board of Internal Medicine, 1979


  • Member, Orthopedic Research Society, 2007

  • Member, Association of American Physicians, 2002

  • Member, Western Association of Physicians, 1991

  • Member, American Society of Clinical Investigation, 1990

  • Member, American Association for the Advancement of Science, 1982

  • Member, American Society of Bone and Mineral Research, 1981

  • Member, Endocrine Society, 1980

  • Member, American Federation of Clinical Research, 1979

  • Member, American College of Physicians, 1978

  • Member, Alpha Omega Alpha, 1973

Awards and Recognition

  • Brasel Basic Science Award, Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, Torrance, CA, 2011

  • Broad Stem Cell Research Center Innovation Award, UCLA, 2010-2012

  • Internationally Elected Council Member, American Society for Bone and Mineral Research, 2009

  • American Society for Bone and Mineral Research Boy Frame Award for Clinical Excellence in Bone and Mineral Metabolism, 2005

  • Cedars-Sinai Research Institute Award for Creative, Multi-user Computing, 1994-1995

  • New Investigator (First) Award, National Institutes of Health, 1985

  • University of Southern California Faculty Innovation Award, 1983-1985

  • Young Investigator Award, American Society for Bone and Mineral Research, 1983

  • Clinical Associate Physician Award, National Institutes of Health General Clinic Research Center, 1982

  • National Research Service Award, National Institutes of Health, 1980 – 1982

  • University-Wide Research Award, University of Kansas, 1978

  • University of Kansas Resident Teaching Award in Medicine, 1978

  • Mustala Research Award in Clinical Pharmacology, University of Kansas School of Medicine, 1976

  • Haden Research Medal, University of Kansas School of Medicine 1975

Research and Publications:

  1. Lomax GP, Adams JS, Jamieson C, Zaia J, Millan MT. Accelerating Stem Cell Treatments for Patients: The Value of Networks & Collaboration. Stem Cells Trans Med. June 26, 2015

  2. James, AW, Shen J, Zhang X, Asatrian BS, Goyal R, Kwak JH, Jiang L, Bengs B, Culiat CT, Turner AS, Seim HB, Wu BM, Lyons Km Adams JS, Ting K, Soo C. NELL-1 in the treatment of osteoporotic bone loss. Nat Commun. 2015 Jun 17;6:7362. PMCID: PMC4557288.

  3. Wu L, Petrigliano FA, Ba K, Lee S, Bogdanov J, McAllister DR, Adams JS, Rosenthal AK, Van Handel B, Crooks GM, Lin Y, Evseenko D. Lysophosphatidic acid mediates fibrosis in injured joints by regulating collagen type I biosynthesis. Osteoarthritis Cartilage, 2015 Feb;23(2):308-18. Epub 2014 Nov 20. PMCID: PMC4465392

  4. Chun RF, Blatter E, Elliott S, Fitz-Gibbon S, Rieger S, Sagasti A, Adams JS, Hewison M. Cloning of a functional 25-hydroxyvitamin D-1α-hydroxylase in zebrafish (Danio rerio). Cell Biochem Funct. 2014 Dec;32(8):675-82. Epub 2014 Oct 7. PMCID: PMC4363119

  5. Zhou R, Chun RF, Lisse TS, Garcia AJ, Xu J, Adams JS, Hewison M. Vitamin D and alternative splicing of RNA. J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 2015:148: 310-317. Epub 2014 Oct 16. PMCID: PMC4361308

  6. Chun RF, Liu NQ, Lee T, Schall JI, Denburg MR, Rutstein RM, Adams JS, Zemel BS, Stallings VA, Hewison M. Vitamin D supplementation and antibacterial immune responses in adolescents and young adults with HIV/AIDS. J Steroid Biochem. 2015 Aug:148:290-297. Epub 2014 Aug 1. PMCID: PMC4312738

  7. Montoya D, Inkeles MS, Liu PT, Realegeno S, Teles RMB, Vaidya P, Munoz MA, Schenk M, Swindell WR, Chun R, Zavala K, Hewison M, Adams JS, Horvath S, Pellegrini M, Bloom BR, Modlin RL. IL-32 is a molecular marker of a host defense network in human tuberculosis. Sci Transl Med. 6:250ra114, 2014. PMCID:PMC4175914.

  8. Lisse TS, Kanagasabai V, Bajaj SP, Zhou R, Chun RF, Hewison, M, Adams JS. The heterodimeric structure of heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein C1/C2 dictates 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D-directed transcriptional events in osteoblasts. Bone Research. 2:1-11, 2014. PMCID: PMC4261231

  9. Chun RF, Liu PT, Modlin RL, Adams JS, Hewison M. Impact of vitamin D on immune function: lessons learned from genome-wide analysis. Front Physiol. 5:1-15, 2014. PMCID:PMC4000998

  10. Yuan F-N F, Valiyaparambil J, Woods MC, Tran H, Pant R, Adams JS, Mallya, SM. Vitamin D signaling regulates oral keratinocyte proliferation in vitro and in vivo. Int J Oncol. 44:1625-1633, 2014. PMID:PMC24626468.