Joseph Carlson, MD, PhD

Professor of Clinical Pathology

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Joseph W. Carlson, MD, PhD is a Professor of Clinical Pathology in the Department of Pathology at the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California (USC) in Los Angeles. He is the Associate Director of Surgical Pathology at LAC+USC Medical Center, with responsibility for gynecologic pathology.

Dr. Carlson holds a bachelor’s degree in Physics from the Johns Hopkins University, a PhD in Biophysics and Computational Biology from the University of Illinois, Urbana – Champaign, and an MD from the Harvard Medical School / Massachusetts Institute of Technology Health Sciences and Technology program. He is licensed by the State of California in Anatomic Pathology and is board-certified by the American Board of Pathology.

He is co-author of the forthcoming Armed Forces Institute of Pathology Fascicle (Series V): Tumors of the Ovary and Fallopian Tube, and an author of several chapters in the recent WHO Classification of Female Genital Tumors, 5th edition.

To learn more about Dr. Carlson’s research, please see the “Research” tab.

To learn more about the clinical gynecologic pathology service, including CME and information about submitting a case for review, please see the “Clinical” tab.


  • MMP14 expression and collagen remodelling support uterine leiomyosarcoma aggressiveness Mol Oncol. 2024 Apr; 18(4):850-865. . View in PubMed
  • Diagnosis Shift in Site of Origin of Tubo-Ovarian Carcinoma Obstet Gynecol. 2024 Mar 21. . View in PubMed
  • Lymph Node Isolated Tumor Cells in Patients With Endometrial Cancer JAMA Netw Open. 2024 Mar 04; 7(3):e240988. . View in PubMed
  • A view of the pan-genome of domesticated Cowpea (Vigna unguiculata [L] Walp. ). Plant Genome. 2024 Mar; 17(1):e20319. . View in PubMed
  • A comprehensive population-based study of malignant ovarian tumors, including histologic and immunohistochemical review, in children and adolescents 0-19 years old in Sweden between 1970 and 2014 Gynecol Oncol. 2024 Feb 09; 184:206-213. . View in PubMed
  • FOXL2 Mutation Status in Sex Cord-stromal Tumors Cannot be Predicted by Morphology Int J Gynecol Pathol. 2024 Jan 01; 43(1):78-89. . View in PubMed
  • Transferable and Interpretable Treatment Effectiveness Prediction for Ovarian Cancer via Multimodal Deep Learning AMIA Annu Symp Proc. 2023; 2023:550-558. . View in PubMed
  • The Expression of the Immunoproteasome Subunit PSMB9 Is Related to Distinct Molecular Subtypes of Uterine Leiomyosarcoma Cancers (Basel). 2022 Oct 13; 14(20). . View in PubMed
  • Mechanical Confinement and DDR1 Signaling Synergize to Regulate Collagen-Induced Apoptosis in Rhabdomyosarcoma Cells Adv Sci (Weinh). 2022 10; 9(28):e2202552. . View in PubMed
  • FOXP3+ T cells in uterine sarcomas are associated with favorable prognosis, low extracellular matrix expression and reduced YAP activation NPJ Precis Oncol. 2021 Nov 19; 5(1):97. . View in PubMed
  • Precision Oncology of High-Grade Ovarian Cancer Defined through Targeted Sequencing Cancers (Basel). 2021 Oct 19; 13(20). . View in PubMed
  • Implementation of the 2021 molecular ESGO/ESTRO/ESP risk groups in endometrial cancer Gynecol Oncol. 2021 08; 162(2):394-400. . View in PubMed
  • Prognostic impact of tumor budding in endometrial carcinoma within distinct molecular subgroups Mod Pathol. 2021 01; 34(1):222-232. . View in PubMed
  • Mesothelin-Specific CAR T Cells Target Ovarian Cancer Cancer Res. 2021 06 01; 81(11):3022-3035. . View in PubMed
  • High density of stroma-localized CD11c-positive macrophages is associated with longer overall survival in high-grade serous ovarian cancer Gynecol Oncol. 2020 12; 159(3):860-868. . View in PubMed
  • Clinicopathological and molecular characterisation of ‘multiple-classifier’ endometrial carcinomas J Pathol. 2020 03; 250(3):312-322. . View in PubMed
  • Interpretation of somatic POLE mutations in endometrial carcinoma J Pathol. 2020 03; 250(3):323-335. . View in PubMed
  • Thermal Proteome Profiling Identifies Oxidative-Dependent Inhibition of the Transcription of Major Oncogenes as a New Therapeutic Mechanism for Select Anticancer Compounds Cancer Res. 2020 04 01; 80(7):1538-1550. . View in PubMed
  • Adaptive RSK-EphA2-GPRC5A signaling switch triggers chemotherapy resistance in ovarian cancer EMBO Mol Med. 2020 04 07; 12(4):e11177. . View in PubMed
  • High-Grade Endometrial Carcinomas: Classification with Molecular Insights Surg Pathol Clin. 2019 Jun; 12(2):343-362. . View in PubMed
  • Mifepristone mediates anti-proliferative effect on ovarian mesenchymal stem/stromal cells from female BRCA1-/2- carriers Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand. 2019 02; 98(2):250-261. . View in PubMed
  • Clinical and Ultrasound Characteristics of the Microcystic Elongated and Fragmented (MELF) Pattern in Endometrial Cancer According to the International Endometrial Tumor Analysis (IETA) criteria Int J Gynecol Cancer. 2019 01; 29(1):119-125. . View in PubMed
  • Phenotype of POLE-mutated endometrial cancer PLoS One. 2019; 14(3):e0214318. . View in PubMed
  • MMP14 in Sarcoma: A Regulator of Tumor Microenvironment Communication in Connective Tissues Cells. 2019 08 28; 8(9). . View in PubMed
  • Integrated Molecular Analysis of Undifferentiated Uterine Sarcomas Reveals Clinically Relevant Molecular Subtypes Clin Cancer Res. 2019 04 01; 25(7):2155-2165. . View in PubMed
  • Publisher Correction: Whole-tissue biopsy phenotyping of three-dimensional tumours reveals patterns of cancer heterogeneity Nat Biomed Eng. 2018 01; 2(1):48. . View in PubMed
  • Human cytomegalovirus in high grade serous ovarian cancer possible implications for patients survival Medicine (Baltimore). 2018 Jan; 97(4):e9685. . View in PubMed
  • Gene Expression Signatures and Immunohistochemical Subtypes Add Prognostic Value to Each Other in Breast Cancer Cohorts Clin Cancer Res. 2017 Dec 15; 23(24):7512-7520. . View in PubMed
  • Whole-tissue biopsy phenotyping of three-dimensional tumours reveals patterns of cancer heterogeneity Nat Biomed Eng. 2017 Oct; 1(10):796-806. . View in PubMed
  • A Selective Biomarker Panel Increases the Reproducibility and the Accuracy in Endometrial Biopsy Diagnosis Int J Gynecol Pathol. 2017 Jul; 36(4):339-347. . View in PubMed
  • Robot-assisted laparoscopy versus laparotomy for infrarenal paraaortic lymphadenectomy in women with high-risk endometrial cancer: A randomised controlled trial Eur J Cancer. 2017 07; 79:81-89. . View in PubMed
  • SOX5/6/21 Prevent Oncogene-Driven Transformation of Brain Stem Cells Cancer Res. 2017 09 15; 77(18):4985-4997. . View in PubMed
  • An Immunohistochemical Algorithm for Ovarian Carcinoma Typing Int J Gynecol Pathol. 2016 Sep; 35(5):430-41. . View in PubMed
  • Serous tubal intraepithelial carcinoma, chronic fallopian tube injury, and serous carcinoma development Virchows Arch. 2016 Jun; 468(6):707-13. . View in PubMed
  • A Cell Type Independent Binary Grading System Does Not Significantly Improve Endometrial Biopsy Interpretation Int J Gynecol Pathol. 2016 May; 35(3):256-63. . View in PubMed
  • Non-classical HLA-class I expression in serous ovarian carcinoma: Correlation with the HLA-genotype, tumor infiltrating immune cells and prognosis Oncoimmunology. 2016; 5(1):e1052213. . View in PubMed
  • A prognosis based classification of undifferentiated uterine sarcomas: identification of mitotic index, hormone receptors and YWHAE-FAM22 translocation status as predictors of survival Int J Cancer. 2015 Apr 01; 136(7):1608-18. . View in PubMed
  • Evaluation of the fallopian tubes after neoadjuvant chemotherapy: persistence of serous tubal intraepithelial carcinoma Int J Gynecol Pathol. 2014 Sep; 33(5):463-9. . View in PubMed
  • Ovarian carcinoma histotype determination is highly reproducible, and is improved through the use of immunohistochemistry Histopathology. 2014 Jun; 64(7):1004-13. . View in PubMed
  • Multi-level gene expression signatures, but not binary, outperform Ki67 for the long term prognostication of breast cancer patients Mol Oncol. 2014 May; 8(3):741-52. . View in PubMed
  • Diagnosis of endometrial stromal tumors: a clinicopathologic study of 25 biopsy specimens with identification of problematic areas Am J Clin Pathol. 2014 Jan; 141(1):133-9. . View in PubMed
  • Correlation of HLA-A02* genotype and HLA class I antigen down-regulation with the prognosis of epithelial ovarian cancer Cancer Immunol Immunother. 2012 Aug; 61(8):1243-53. . View in PubMed
  • Prevalence of human papillomavirus (HPV) types in cervical cancer 2003-2008 in Stockholm, Sweden, before public HPV vaccination Acta Oncol. 2011 Nov; 50(8):1215-9. . View in PubMed
  • MiMIC: a highly versatile transposon insertion resource for engineering Drosophila melanogaster genes Nat Methods. 2011 Sep; 8(9):737-43. . View in PubMed
  • The Drosophila gene disruption project: progress using transposons with distinctive site specificities Genetics. 2011 Jul; 188(3):731-43. . View in PubMed
  • A molecularly defined duplication set for the X chromosome of Drosophila melanogaster Genetics. 2010 Dec; 186(4):1111-25. . View in PubMed
  • Serous tubal intraepithelial carcinoma: diagnostic reproducibility and its implications Int J Gynecol Pathol. 2010 Jul; 29(4):310-4. . View in PubMed
  • Coexisting intraepithelial serous carcinomas of the endometrium and fallopian tube: frequency and potential significance Int J Gynecol Pathol. 2009 Jul; 28(4):308-15. . View in PubMed
  • Versatile P[acman] BAC libraries for transgenesis studies in Drosophila melanogaster Nat Methods. 2009 Jun; 6(6):431-4. . View in PubMed
  • Amplification of PVT1 contributes to the pathophysiology of ovarian and breast cancer Clin Cancer Res. 2007 Oct 01; 13(19):5745-55. . View in PubMed
  • The BDGP gene disruption project: single transposon insertions associated with 40% of Drosophila genes Genetics. 2004 Jun; 167(2):761-81. . View in PubMed