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Pathobiology. 2000;68(4-5):202-8.

Quantitative molecular analysis of laser-microdissected paraffin-embedded human tissues.

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Institute of Pathology, Medizinische Hochschule Hannover, Germany.


Laser microdissection enables the contamination-free isolation of morphologically defined pure cell populations from archival formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissue specimens. Cells isolated by this method have been characterized by a wide variety of qualitative molecular assays, e.g. loss of heterozygosity, point mutations, clonality and lineage origin. The recently introduced real-time PCR technology renders the reliable quantification of very small amounts of nucleic acids possible. Several groups including our own showed that this technique can be successfully applied for the quantification of DNA and RNA isolated from microdissected archival tissue sections, even after immunohistochemical staining. The exact analysis of quantitative changes of nucleic acids during the course of pathological alterations has thus become possible. In many situations these quantitative changes can be expected to be more important than qualitative changes. The new technology for the quantification of structural genomic alterations and changes in the gene expression pattern in conjunction with microdissection have equipped morphologists with a powerful tool to study reactive and neoplastic changes of tissues.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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