Dr. Ervin's research interests focus on the design and conduct of randomized clinical trials of interventions to treat and prevent ocular disease and visual impairment. Dr. Ervin has contributed to numerous studies of the causes, prevention, diagnosis or treatment of disorders of the eye and visual system including age-related macular degeneration, refractive error, low vision, cataract, and diabetic retinopathy. She is currently the Co-Principal Investigator of the Data Coordinating Center for a multicenter observational study of Stargardt Disease and for a clinical trial of lutein and zeaxanthin for ocular and oculocutaneous albinism with colleagues at the Wilmer Eye Institute.
Dr. Ervin also conducts novel research on the ethical implications of US federal regulations for institutional review boards (IRBs). Dr. Ervin is keenly interested in the impact of federal regulations on the design and conduct of multicenter clinical trials, specifically the advantages and disadvantages of alternate IRB review models for streamlining ethical review in the multicenter setting. She is currently the Co-Principal Investigator of an NIH-funded project to establish priorities for the principles and practices of central IRBs in the multicenter study setting. The project investigators will propose guidance for institutions and investigators involved in central IRB review of a multicenter clinical trial and for sponsors recommending use of central IRBs for multicenter trials.