The Division of Histology and Immunohistochemistry is an integral part of the Anatomic Pathology Branch. Pathology laboratories at University Hospital and University Hospital East submit a combined average of 705 tissue cassettes daily for processing, embedding, and cutting for slide preparation.
When fully staffed, the laboratory staff consisting of one manager, 14 full-time and four part-time histotechnologists, and one full-time laboratory technician (MLT), meet operational turn-around-time goals by delivering H&E stained slides and other special-ordered histochemical stained slides to attending pathologists for next day evaluation.
As transplantation surgery continues to increase so does the demand for same-day biopsy results for appropriate patient care. To meet same-day processing of STAT transplant biopsy specimens, a microwave tissue processor has been employed to provide H&E stained slides within 3.5 hours from time of receipt in the surgical pathology grossing laboratory, if the specimen is received before 3 PM. Specimens received after 3 PM are ready to be read (except for special stains) by 7 AM the next morning on weekdays, and by 9 AM on weekends.
The OSU Histology Lab, LLC provides an alternate site for processing surgical biopsies performed in the outreach patient setting, as well as processing the tissue from Memorial Hospital of Union County in Marysville, OH. A manager and five additional professional staff perform grossing, histology, and transcription and achieve H&E slide delivery times that are identical to turn-around-time expectations as compared to the main OSU Histology Laboratory. For the 2010-2011 fiscal year, the OSU Histology Lab, LLC processed approximately 22,000 cases and 45,500 cassettes. The OSU Histology Lab, LLC has successfully completed inspections and is accredited by the College of American Pathologists and the New York State Health Department.
To address the nationwide shortage of quality histotechnologists, we combined efforts with Indiana University College of Medicine to identify and train qualified individuals in the field of histotechnology. On-line course work is available for those applicants with the OSUMC histology laboratory serving as a clinical training site; one Indiana University student is employed at the OSU Histology Lab, LLC, and is currently doing her clinicals.
The IHC laboratory, staffed with a manager and three technologists, has a test menu of approximately 160 immunostains, and stains an average of 350 slides per day. We continue to work up and utilize new antibodies as they become available and are found to be clinically useful. This year, the additions have included CD44s, CD141, Pax-2, Pax-5, Pax-8, and CK5. Additionally, we have added three combinations of double stains, including P63/melan A, P63/AE1,3, and P63/SMMS, to our test menu.
The IHC laboratory has extensively evaluated the available automated immunostainers on the market. Since no single immunostainer is able to produce excellent stains on all antibodies, at least two types of machines are necessary for a large laboratory. We currently have six Leica/Bond Max instruments, two Leica/Bond III instruments, and four DAKO Autostainers. The Leica/Bond instruments are more automated, rely exclusively on compact polymer detection system, and use a lower volume of reagents, and the Leica Bond III instruments provide more efficient operation, resulting in shorter run times.