[Histonet] RE: Microwave vs Steamer/Decloaker


I read, with great interest, the discussion of microwave vs 
Steamer/decloaker.  I would agree that achieving consistency in the process, 
from run to run, batch to batch, is the key.  Personally, I've found that 
more difficult (but not impossible) to achieve in anything but a closed 
system, such as a steamer or pressure cooker.  I started out using a 
microwave, then a microwave pressure cooker, and now use a digital, 
programmable, pressure cooker that offers me the desired consistency in 
temp, time, and pressure control. The reagents you use in that instrument 
and process are, of course, entirely up to you, and can make or break the 
successful labeling of an antigen site.  What I do not find is a "one 
reagent fits all" that will sucessfully work for all tissues, all 
antibodies, and all fixatives and tissue processing, since all labs seem to 
have such great variability in that part of the process.
I hope this helps.
Terri Braud
Surgical Pathology Manager
Medical Laboratories
University of Virgnina Health Systems
Charlottesville, VA  22908

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