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Semin Diagn Pathol. 2002 May;19(2):56-71.

Methods in molecular surgical pathology.

Author information

  • Department of Pathology, MD Anderson Cancer Center, The University of Texas, Houston, USA.


Nucleic acids (DNA and RNA) contain the basic information for the transcription and translation of the genetic information into the functional cell protein products. To obtain tissue materials for suitable extraction of these cellular components, proper preservation and storage are necessary for both fresh and archival materials. Techniques for nucleic acid analysis are fundamentally based on complementarity between target and probe nucleotide sequences called hybridization. These are aided by the discovery of polymerase chain reaction that allow for specific amplification of target nucleic acid sequences for detection and enhancing yields from small and precious specimens. These techniques, along with protein analysis by Western blotting, require validation, optimization, laboratory quality control, and assurance for competency. Interpretative criteria for each test according to accepted guidelines are necessary for clinical diagnostic purposes. High throughput technologies of nucleic acid and protein analyses for the discovery of new markers and understanding biological processes and pathways are also highlighted for their potential impact on surgical pathology practice.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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