Fluorescence in situ hybridization: uses and limitations

Semin Hematol. 2000 Oct;37(4):320-33. doi: 10.1016/s0037-1963(00)90013-1.


The development of molecular hybridization techniques such as fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) has had a major Impact on efforts to detect and characterize the genetic changes that give rise to human tumors. With probes designed to Identify specific chromosomes and chromosomal regions, FISH is used routinely by cytogenetics and pathology laboratories to identify recurring chromosomal abnormalities associated with hematologic malignant diseases. In many cases FISH analysis provides increased sensitivity, in that cytogenetic abnormalities have been found In samples that appeared to be normal by morphologic and conventional cytogenetic examination. The combination of cytogenetic, FISH, and molecular analyses provides a powerful approach for diagnosing and subclassifying malignant diseases into clinically and biologically relevant subgroups, In selecting appropriate therapy, and in monitoring the efficacy of therapeutic regimens.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cytogenetic Analysis / methods*
  • Humans
  • In Situ Hybridization, Fluorescence / methods*
  • Neoplasms / genetics
  • Sensitivity and Specificity