Current advances in quantitative genome and gene expression analyses allow precise molecular genetic fingerprinting of tumor tissues. A crucial factor for the reliability of the data obtained with these refined techniques is the use of morphologically well-defined cell populations. Microdissection technology has been developed to procure pure cell populations from specific areas of tissue sections under microscopic control. This review covers techniques of tissue microdissection in the context of commonly used methods of quantitative genome and gene expression analysis. The first part of the review will summarize the technical aspects of various methods developed for tissue microdissection. In the latter part, current applications of quantitative genome and gene expression analysis techniques employed in microdissected tissue samples will be described.