Professor Dominique Heymann, PhD

Professor of Bone OncologyDominique Heymann

Department of Oncology & Metabolism
The Medical School
Beech Hill Road
S10 2RX

Office: DU37

Tel: +44(0)114 215 9010


I joined the Department of Oncology and Metabolism at the University of Sheffield (UK) as Professor of Bone Oncology in September 2015 where I head an Associated European Laboratory “Sarcoma Research Unit” (University of Sheffield/INSERM). I studied cell biology, biochemistry and immunology in INSERM (French NIH) unit 211 at the University of Nantes (France) and defended my Ph.D. in 1995. I successively obtained a technician and an engineer position at the University Hospital of Nantes and was appointed Associate-Professor in the Department of Histology and Embryology in 2001. In 2009, I was awarded a personal Chair of Histology and Embryology. At the Nantes Hospital, I was the quality control manager of the Tissue bank and Gene and Cellular Therapy Unit and in 2014 became the Head of the Tissue Bank (tissue preparation and delivery for grafts). At the Faculty of Medicine of Nantes, I led a laboratory research group (INSERM UMR 957) studying the pathogenesis of primary bone tumours. I participated in the national scientific advisory board of INSERM (2008-2012) and was Co-chair of the 5th INSERM scientific committee (“Physiology and pathophysiology of endocrine, bone, skin and gastrointestinal tissues” 2012-2016). I am authored more than 220 publications in peer-reviewed journals mainly in the field of bone cancer and osteoclast differentiation, as well as more than 300 abstracts, 2 books and 20 book chapters.

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Research Interests

My research interest focuses on the pathogenesis of sarcoma especially on bone sarcomas (osteosarcoma, Ewing’s sarcoma, chondrosarcoma). From translational approaches (in vitro, in vivo models and follow up of biological parameters in biological cohorts), I’m particularly interested in the dialog of bone microenvironment (osteoblast, osteoclast, vascular cells, immune cells etc.) and the tumour cells. The final objective of my research is to improve the knowledge on sarcoma for developing new therapeutic approaches (e.g. targeting of macrophage, use of specific anti-cytokine antibodies, combination therapies, etc.).

Teaching Interests

My teaching interests are histology, embryology and the pathophysiology of bone. I headed the Department of Histology and Embryology of Faculty of Medicine in Nantes (France).

Professional Activities

I’m currently Professor of Bone Oncology in the Department of Oncology based at the Medical School of The University of Sheffield.

Current Projects

Current aims are to strengthen the involvement of The University of Sheffield in the oncology field. The team specific attention is focused on the characterization the microenvironment associated with sarcoma development. We are particularly interested by the dialog established between cancer initiating cells and their environment (e.g. macrophages, endothelial cells, bone cells or associated cytokines). Our approaches are based on microfluidic (see the link DEPArrayTM platform) and cellular approaches, in vivo pre-clinical models including Zebrafish and human biological cohorts.

Key Publications

  1. Tellez-Gabriel M, Charrier C, Brounais-Le Royer B, Mullard M, Brown H, Verrecchia F, Heymann D. Analysis of gap junctional intercellular communications using a dielectrophoresis-based microchip. Eur J Cell Biol, in press
  2. Chemel M, Brion R, Ségaliny AI, Lamora A, Charrier C, Brulin B, Maugars Y, Le Goff B, Heymann D, Verrecchia F. BMP-2 and TGF-b1 inhibit the expression of the pro-inflammatory cytokine IL-34 in rheumatoid arthritis synovial fibroblasts. Am J Pathol, 2017, 187:156-162.
  3. Dumars C, Nguyen JM, Gaultier A, Lanel R, Corradini N, Gouin F, Heymann D, Heymann MF. Dysregulation of macrophage polarization is associated with the metastatic process in osteosarcoma. Oncotarget, 2016, 78343-78354
  4. Tellez-Gabriel M, Ory B, Lamoureux F, Heymann MF, Heymann D. Tumour heterogeneity: the key advantages of single-cells analysis. Int J Mol Sci 2016, 17, 2142.
  5. Jacques C, Lamoureux F, Baud'huin M , Rodriguez Calleja L , Quillard T, Amiaud J, Perrot P, Tirode F, Redini F , Bradner J , Heymann D, Ory B. Targeting the epigenetic readers in Ewing sarcoma inhibits the oncogenic transciption factor EWS/FLi1. Oncotarget, 2016, 7,125-140.
  6. Tellez Gabriel M, Rodriguez Calleja L, Chalopin A, Ory B, Heymann D. Circulating tumor cells: a review of non EpCAM-based approaches for cell enrichment and isolation. Clin Chem 2016;62(4):571-81.
  7. Rodriguez Calleja L, Jacques, C, Lamoureux F, Baud’huin M, Tellez Gabriel M, Quillard T, Debashish S, Lecanda F, Verrecchia F, Heymann D, Ory B, Ellisen LW. Np63a stimulates TGF-induced metastasis through microRNA regulation. Cancer Res 2016; 76(11):3236-51
  8. Ségaliny AI, Mohamadi A, Dizier B, Lokajczyk A, Brion R, Lanel R, Amiaud J, Charrier C, Boisson-Vidal C, Heymann D. Interleukin-34 promotes the tumour progression and metastatic process in osteosarcoma through induction of angiogenesis and macrophage recruitment. Int J Cancer, 2015, 137:73-85.
  9. Télétchéa S, Stresing V, Hervouet S, Baud’huin M, Heymann MF, Bertho G, Charrier C, Ando K, Heymann D. Novel RANK antagonists for the treatment of bone resorptive disease: Theoretical predictions and experimental validation. J Bone Miner Res, 2014, 29:1466-1477.
  10. Lamoureux F, Baud’huin M, Rodriguez L, Jacques C, Lecanda F, Berreur M, Rédini F, Bradner JE, Heymann D, Ory B. Specific inhibition of BET bromodomains interferes with the vicious cycle of bone tumor development. Nature Commun, 2014, 19;5:3511.
  11. Chemel M, Le Goff B, Brion R, Cozic C, Berreur M, Amiaud J, Bougras G, Touchais S, Blanchard F, Heymann MF, Berthelot JM, Verrecchia F, Heymann D. Interleukin-34 expression is associated with synovitis severity in rheumatoid arthritis. Ann Rheum Dis, 2012, 71:150-154.


We would like to thank all our funders for supporting our research.


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