NIH, National Cancer Institute, Division of Cancer Treatment and Diagnosis (DCTD) NIH - National Institutes of Health National Cancer Institute DCTD - Division of Cancer Treatment and Diagnosis

Effect of Prolonged Formalin Fixation on the Immunohistochemical Reactivity of Breast Markers

Author(s): Arber Daniel A

Publication: Appl Immunohistochem Mol Morph, 2002, Vol. 10, Page 183

PubMed ID: 12051639 PubMed Review Paper? No

Purpose of Paper

To determine if prolonged formalin fixation affects the efficacy of immunohistochemical staining for the following breast cancer markers: estrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor (PR), c-erb-B2, Ki-67, p27, and vimentin.

Conclusion of Paper

Immunohistochemical staining was reduced in a fixation time- and marker- specific manner. Immunoreactivity was reduced for c-erb-B2 after 20 days, ER after 57 days, and PR after 120 days of formalin fixation. Ki-67, p27, and vimentin immunostaining was unaffected after 157 days of fixation, indicating they are suboptimal markers of antigen preservation.

Studies

  1. Study Purpose

    To determine if prolonged formalin fixation affects the efficacy of immunohistochemical staining for the following breast cancer markers: estrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor (PR), c-erb-B2, Ki-67, p27, and vimentin.

    Summary of Findings:

    The immunoreactivity of ER, PR, and c-erb-B2 were significantly reduced after prolonged formalin fixation. Of the 33 cases examined, 8 displayed reduced immunostaining with prolonged fixation. Specifically, 3 of the 23 positive cases for ER overexpression displayed a significant reduction in staining after 57, 58, and 64 days of formalin fixation. Of the 21 positive cases of PR 1 displayed a significant reduction in staining after fixation for 120 days, and of the 9 positive cases for c-erb-B2 4 displayed a significant reduction in immunostaining after 20, 42, 99, and 120 days of fixation. Ki-67, p27, and vimentin expression were observed in all samples for all fixation times.

    Biospecimens
    Preservative Types
    • Formalin
    Diagnoses:
    • Neoplastic - Carcinoma
    Platform:
    AnalyteTechnology Platform
    Protein Immunohistochemistry
    Pre-analytical Factors:
    ClassificationPre-analytical FactorValue(s)
    Biospecimen Preservation Time in fixative 7-154 days
    24 h

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