Automatic Immunofluorescence Detection Techniques

The recent development of a fully automated microscopic device allows for the objective screening and quantitation of DTCs, as well as their immunologic and genetic analyses (Mehes et al. 2001a, 2003; Am-bros et al. 2001; Ambros and Mehes 2002). The unequivocal identification of the true nature (malignant vs benign) of DTC can be achieved by a sequential fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) of the immunologically positive cells (Fig. 11.7.1). Furthermore, the visualization of different antibodies on the same cell can provide vital information on a tumor's aggressiveness. There is a fundamental difference between detecting a proliferative tumor cell vs an apop-totic cell (Mehes et al. 2001b).

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