Joseph Carlson

Affiliated to research

About me

I am a surgical pathologist and clinical scientist with a specific interest in the diagnosis and treatment of cancers of the female genital tract. I currently work at the Karolinska University Hospital in Stockholm, Sweden. 

I am a research team leader in the Department of Oncology-Pathology

Link to Carlson Research Team

Research description

Gynecologic cancers affect women of all ages. These tumors as a group present unique challenges for diagnosis and treatment. Our research is focused on identifying precursor lesions to these malignancies, especially the deadliest form of ovarian cancer, as well as on developing new methods of molecular diagnosis.

Our group has a number of ongoing lines of research within the Cancer Center Karolinska and the Department of Pathology and Cytology at the Karolinska University Hospital.

Tools and techniques used in our group include modern pathology techniques such as microscopy, immunohistochemistry, quantitative PCR and FISH. Our focus is the role of pathology in diagnosis and “personalized medicine”, where tumor characteristics can be used to develop individual treatment strategies.

Teaching portfolio

I currently arrange two course at the Karolinska Insitutet. The first, The KI Workshop in Gynecologic Pathology, is an annual two-day course for experienced pathologists featuring three internationally renowned guest lecturers. This course is currently (since 2016) organized via the KI Department of Executive Education.

The second course is an annual three day resident course in gynecologic pathology, currently with two parts. Part one (ovary, fallopian tube and trophoblastic tumors) is offered on odd years and part two (vulva, vagina, cervix and soft tissue tumors) is offered on even years. This course is currently (since 2017) organized via Socialstyrelsen and application is made there.


I received a PhD in Biophysics and Computational Biology from the University of Illinois - Urbana in 1999. I subsequently received my MD from the Harvard Medical School / Massachusetts Institute of Technology combined Health Science and Technology program.

I completed my postgraduate training at Brigham and Women's Hospital, a Harvard Medical School hospital. I first completed my residency in Anatomic Pathology, followed by a fellowship in Women's and Perinatal Pathology.

I became an Associate Professor (docent) in Clinical Pathology in 2013.