KRAS and BRAF Mutations in Ovarian Tumors: A Comprehensive Study of Invasive Carcinomas, Borderline Tumors and Extraovarian Implants

Gynecol Oncol. 2006 Dec;103(3):883-7. doi: 10.1016/j.ygyno.2006.05.029. Epub 2006 Jun 30.


Objective: Mutations of BRAF, a downstream mediator of K-RAS, have been described in serous borderline tumors of the ovary. Data concerning other types of ovarian tumors are scarce. Therefore, we assessed KRAS and BRAF mutation in a series of more than 100 different ovarian tumors.

Methods: Paraffin-embedded material, including invasive carcinomas, borderline tumors, benign lesions and implants, was used. BRAF codon 600 in exon 15 and K-RAS codon 12 in exon 2 were analysed.

Results: 92 cases (92%), including all serous carcinomas (100%), did not show a mutation of BRAF. Eight cases (8.0%), including five serous borderline tumors (31.25%), contained a mutation. In all serous borderline tumors, codon 600 was affected. The remaining three cases were invasive carcinomas of endometrioid (mutation on codon 600), mucinous (mutation on codon 600) and clear cell (mutation on codon 615) subtype. There was no BRAF mutation in mucinous borderline tumors. Regarding K-RAS, 89 cases (87.25%) did not show an aberration. The 11 positive borderline tumors (10.7%) were of serous (22.2%) and of mucinous type (46.6%). There was a KRAS mutation in a serous and a mucinous invasive carcinoma each. BRAF and K-RAS mutations were mutually exclusive and not seen in implants.

Conclusion: Mutation of either K-RAS or BRAF is frequent in borderline tumors but is not found in invasive serous carcinomas and is very rare in other invasive subtypes. This supports the notion of different pathological pathways. For the development of extraovarian implants, further studies are observed.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma, Clear Cell / genetics
  • Adenocarcinoma, Clear Cell / pathology
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Carcinoma, Endometrioid / genetics
  • Carcinoma, Endometrioid / pathology
  • Cystadenocarcinoma, Mucinous / genetics
  • Cystadenocarcinoma, Mucinous / pathology
  • Cystadenocarcinoma, Serous / genetics
  • Cystadenocarcinoma, Serous / pathology
  • DNA, Neoplasm / analysis
  • Female
  • Genes, ras / genetics*
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Mutation
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Neoplasm Metastasis
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / pathology
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins B-raf / genetics*


  • DNA, Neoplasm
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins B-raf