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In Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.)

Disease states and cellular compartments can display a remarkable amount of heterogeneity, and truly appreciating this heterogeneity requires the ability to detect and probe each subpopulation present. A myriad of recent single-cell assays has allowed for in-depth analysis of these diverse cellular populations; however, fully understanding the interplay between each cell type requires knowledge not only of their mere presence but also of their spatial organization and their relation one to the other. Immunohistochemistry allows for the visualization of cells and tissue; however, standard techniques only allow for the use of very few probes on a single specimen, not allowing for in-depth analysis of complex cellular heterogeneity. A number of multiplex imaging techniques, such as immunofluorescence and multiplex immunohistochemistry, have been proposed to allow probing more cellular markers at once; however, many of these techniques still have their limitations. The use of fluorescent markers has an inherent limitation to the number of probes that can be simultaneously used due to spectral overlap. Moreover, other proposed multiplex IHC methods are time-consuming and require expensive reagents. Still, many of the methods rely on frozen tissue, which deviates from standards in human pathological evaluation. Here, we describe a multiplex IHC technique, staining for consecutive markers on a single slide, which utilizes similar steps and similar reagents as standard IHC, thus making it possible for any lab with standard IHC capabilities to perform this useful procedure. This method has been validated and confirmed that consecutive markers can be stained without the risk of cross-reactivity between staining cycles. Furthermore, we have validated that this technique does not lead to decreased antigenicity of subsequent epitopes probed, nor does it lead to steric hindrance.

Akturk Guray, Sweeney Robert, Remark Romain, Merad Miriam, Gnjatic Sacha


Biomarkers, CD20, CD3, CD66b, CD68, CD8, Cancer immunotherapy, Cell segmentation, Chromogenic immunohistochemistry, Consecutive staining, FOXP3, Histology, Image analysis, Immuno-oncology, Immunostaining, In situ markers, Machine learning, Morphology, Multiplexed immunohistochemistry, PD-1, PD-L1, Positive cell detection, Random forest, Serial staining, Single slide, Whole slide imaging