Immunocytochemical detection of prognostic markers in breast cancer; technical considerations
The purpose of this study was to establish a good technical procedure for immunocytochemical (IC) staining of prognostic markers in breast cancer specimens. The influence of various preparation, fixation and storage methods on ER, P53 and Ki-67 IC staining was assessed, using cells of two breast cancer cell lines T47D (ER/P53+) and ZR-75-ER (ER+, P53−). In addition we searched for a suitable transport medium. Depending on the technical procedure, great variations in expression of the tested antigens were found. Cytospins fixed and stored according to the Abbott method gave the best results. Histocon appeared to be the medium of choice. A good concordance of IC and immunohistochemical (IH) results was found when the adopted method was tested on material of 10 breast cancers. This study underlines the importance of quality controlled standardization of cell processing, fixation and storage of fine needle aspiration (FNA) aspirates in order to obtain reproducible and consistent IC results.