Genomic and Molecular Characteristics of Ovarian Carcinosarcoma

Am J Clin Oncol. 2023 Dec 1;46(12):572-576. doi: 10.1097/COC.0000000000001056. Epub 2023 Oct 17.


Ovarian carcinosarcoma (OCS) is a rare malignancy with a poor prognosis. It is a biphasic tumor with malignant epithelial and mesenchymal components. A few mutations commonly seen in cancer have been identified in OCS, including TP53, PIK3CA, c-myc, ZNF217, ARID1A, and CTNNB1. Some OCS tumors have shown vascular endothelial growth factor positivity and limited HER2 expression. There is evidence of homologous recombination deficiency in OCS. This malignancy can be categorized as copy number high but has not been shown to have a high tumor mutational burden. There are mixed findings regarding the presence of biomarkers targeted by immune checkpoint inhibitors in OCS. For treatments other than systemic chemotherapy, the data available are largely based on in vitro and in vivo studies. In addition, there are case reports citing the use of poly-ADP ribose polymerase inhibitors, vascular endothelial growth factor inhibitors, and immunotherapy with varying degrees of success. This review paper will discuss the molecular and genomic characteristics of OCS, which can guide future treatment strategies.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Carcinosarcoma* / drug therapy
  • Carcinosarcoma* / therapy
  • Female
  • Genomics
  • Humans
  • Ovarian Neoplasms* / drug therapy
  • Ovarian Neoplasms* / therapy
  • Poly(ADP-ribose) Polymerase Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A / genetics


  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
  • Poly(ADP-ribose) Polymerase Inhibitors