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Zentrale Tel.: 06221-560
Translational Lung Research Center Heidelberg

Rocio Sotillo, PhD

Professor for Molecular Thoracic Oncology


German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ)


Im Neuenheimer Feld

69120 Heidelberg

Phone:+49 6221 423691





Research Interests:

  • molecular basis of lung tumor development and drug resistance
  • role of chromosomal instability (CIN) in tumor initiation, suppression and relapse
  • innovative 3D in vitro culture systems



Curriculum Vitae

1998Bachelor in Pharmacy, University San Pablo-CEU, Spain
2002Doctoral Thesis (summa cum laude), Spanish National Cancer Center (CNIO), Madrid, Spain.
2003-2008Postdoctoral fellow, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, Cancer Biology and Genetics Program, New York, USA
2008-2010Research Associate. Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, Cancer Biology and Genetics Program, New York, USA
2010-2015Staff Scientist. EMBL–Monterotondo, Rome, Italy
Since 2015Head of the division: “Molecular Thoracic Oncology”, German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Heidelberg, Germany
Since 2015W3 Professor – Molecular Thoracic Oncology, University of Heidelberg, Germany
Since 2015Principal Investigator of the Translational Lung Research Center Heidelberg (TLRC) and the German Center for Lung Research (DZL)



Honours & Awards

2003Caja Madrid Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship
2007Charles H. Revson Foundation Award
2008Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center Research Fellow Award
2010Thomas G. Labrecque Foundation, Uniting Against Lung Cancer award
2012ERC investigator award
2012Howard Hughes Medical Institute, International Early Career Scientist







Dr. Yuanyuan Chen

Tel.:+49(0)6221 56-

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Dr. Kalman Somogyi

Tel.: +49(0)6221 56-

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Dr. Kristina Alikhanyan

Tel.: +49(0)6221 56-

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Dr. Lorena Salgueiro

Tel.: +49(0)6221 56-



Technical Assistants

Simone Kraut


PhD Students

Ana Maia dos Santos Leite

Jose Paulo Lorenzo

Sharavan Venkateswaran


MD Students

Despina Trouli




Selected Publications

  1. Rowald K, Mantovan M, Passos, J, Buccitelli C, Mardin BR, Korbel JO, Jechlinger M, Sotillo R.(2016) Negative selection and chromosome instability induced by Mad2 overexpression delay breast cancer but facilitate oncogene-independent outgrowth. Cell Rep.15(12): 2679-91.
  2. Schvartzman JM, Duijf PH, Sotillo R, Coker C, Benezra R. (2011) Mad2 is a critical mediator of the chromosome instability observed upon Rb and p53 pathway inhibition.Cancer Cell 19(6):701-714.
  3. Sotillo R, Schvartzman JM, Socci ND, Benezra R. (2010) Mad2-induced chromosome instability leads to lung tumour relapse after oncogene withdrawal. Nature 464(7287):436-440.
  4. Sotillo R, Hernando E, Díaz-Rodríguez E, Teruya-Feldstein J, Cordón-Cardo C, Lowe SW, Benezra R. (2007) Mad2 overexpression promotes aneuploidy and tumorigenesis in mice. Cancer Cell 11(1):9-23.
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