Immunocytochemistry has become an essential adjunct to surgical pathological analysis. Its contributions range across diagnostic, prognostic and predictive applications. Its wide ranging success is based on the ready availability of antibodies to biologically important molecules. However, the effective applicability of many of these antibodies directed at cell surface or nuclear antigens is hampered by the loss of tissue antigenicity caused by formalin fixation, the most common method used for preservation of tissue morphology. In this review, the efficacy and versatility of heat-mediated antigen retrieval method to reverse the deleterious effects of formalin fixation are discussed in order to highlight the enormous role it has played in promoting wider applicability of immunocytochemistry to diagnostic histopathology.
- Antigen retrieval
- Formalin fixation
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine