Skip to main content


A rare cancer that arises in the connective tissues, such as bone, muscle, tendons, nerves, fat, cartilage and blood vessels

Sarcomas are rare cancers that can begin anywhere in the body. While there are two main types – soft tissue sarcomas and bone sarcomas – there are more than 50 subtypes, each of which requires a different treatment and needs highly specialised, multidisciplinary care.

While patient outcomes are good for those who receive treatment prior to their tumour spreading, one in five sarcoma survivors will develop a second cancer within 10 years. Identifying people at risk may lead to earlier detection and treatment, improving treatment outcomes and potentially reducing the risk of cancer recurrence. Researchers at Garvan are searching for new ways to predict increased risk and identify individualised therapies that offer patients improved healthcare.

For more information about sarcoma, visit ANZSA.

Sarcoma research at Garvan

Whole-genome sequencing provides Garvan’s research teams with the unparalleled ability to test families with a genetic risk for sarcoma, vastly increasing our understanding of this aggressive cancer and leading to improved prevention and more effective personalised medicine.

We now understand that there are significant familial risk factors for sarcoma. Garvan’s Professor David Thomas and his team are examining family links and genetic predisposition to sarcomas, and offering access to potential new therapies via the Molecular Screening and Therapeutics (MoST) clinical trials program.