Karin de Visser Group

Karin de Visser

Oncode Investigator at NKI

My Research

Dr. Karin E. de Visser obtained her PhD at the Division of Immunology at the Netherlands Cancer Institute in Amsterdam in the field of tumor immunotherapy. From 2003-2005 she worked as a postdoctoral fellow of the Dutch Cancer Society in the lab of Dr. Lisa Coussens in the Cancer Research Institute at the University of California, San Francisco, where she developed an active interest in the interplay between adaptive and innate immune system during cancer development. She discoverd a novel promoting role for B lymphocytes during inflammation-associated skin carcinogenesis.

In 2005 she joined the laboratory of Dr. Jos Jonkers at the Division of Molecular Biology at the Netherlands Cancer Institute, where she expanded her research direction into the field of inflammation and mammary carcinogenesis, using conditional mouse models. Currently she is group leader at the Division of Immunology at the Netherlands Cancer Institute. The overall goal of her research is to understand by which mechanisms the immune system influences breast cancer metastasis and response to conventional anti-cancer therapies. Through mechanistic understanding of the crosstalk between the immune system and cancer cells she aims to contribute to the design of novel immunomodulatory strategies to fight metastatic breast cancer and to increase the efficacy of anti-cancer therapy response.

A recent breakthrough of her lab is the discovery that mammary tumors induce a systemic inflammatory response involving γδT cells and neutrophils to facilitate metastasis formation (Coffelt et al. Nature 2015). Karin de Visser received a prestigious ERC consolidator grant in 2014, she is recipient of the 2015 Metastasis Research Prize of the Beug Foundation and in 2016 she was selected as a member of the EMBO young investigator program. Please have a look at her website for more information.


  • 2017: Invited member of The Academy of Europe (Academia Europaea)
  • 2016: Selected as an EMBO Young Investigator (EMBO YIP)
  • 2015: The Metastasis Research Price for advanced researchers of the Beug Foundation for Metastasis Research
  • 2014: ERC consolidator grant laureate
  • 2009: NWO-VIDI laureate
  • 2009: NWO/Aspasia award: career advancement award of the Innovational Research Incentives Scheme of NWO.
  • 2003: AACR-Women in cancer research Brigid G. Leventhal Scholar-in-Training Award for participation in the 94th AACR Annual Meeting, 2003.
  • 2003-2005: Dutch Cancer Society (KWF) fellowship for fundamental and (pre)-clinical cancer research

Key Publications

  1. Ciampricotti, M., Hau, C. S., Doornebal, C. W., Jonkers, J., & De Visser, K. E. (2012). Chemotherapy response of spontaneous mammary tumors is independent of the adaptive immune system. Nature medicine, 18(3), 344.
  2. Coffelt, S. B., Kersten, K., Doornebal, C. W., Weiden, J., Vrijland, K., Hau, C. S., ... & de Visser, K. E. (2015). IL-17-producing γδ T cells and neutrophils conspire to promote breast cancer metastasis. Nature, 522(7556), 345.
  3. Coffelt, S. B., Wellenstein, M. D., & de Visser, K. E. (2016). Neutrophils in cancer: neutral no more. Nature Reviews Cancer, 16(7), 431.
  4. Doornebal, C. W., Klarenbeek, S., Braumuller, T. M., Klijn, C. N., Ciampricotti, M., Hau, C. S., ... & de Visser, K. E. (2013). A preclinical mouse model of invasive lobular breast cancer metastasis. Cancer research, 73(1), 353-363.
  5. Kersten, K., Coffelt, S. B., Hoogstraat, M., Verstegen, N. J., Vrijland, K., Ciampricotti, M., ... & Doshi, P. (2017). Mammary tumor-derived CCL2 enhances pro-metastatic systemic inflammation through upregulation of IL1β in tumor-associated macrophages. Oncoimmunology, 6(8), e1334744.
Contact Information
Karin de Visser Oncode Investigator

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