A novel quality control slide for quantitative immunohistochemistry testing

J Histochem Cytochem. 2002 Nov;50(11):1425-34. doi: 10.1177/002215540205001101.


We introduce a novel quality control technology that may improve intra- and interlaboratory immunohistochemistry (IHC) standardization. The technology involves the creation of standardized antibody targets that are attached to the same slides as the patient sample. After IHC staining, the targets turn the same color as the stained cells or tissue elements. Unlike current clinical practice, our proposed targets are neither cells nor tissue sections. To create reproducible standards that are available in unlimited supply, we use short constrained peptides as antibody targets. These peptides are attached directly to the glass slide. We show that these peptides simulate the portion of the native antigen to which the antibody binds. They are useful in detecting subtle changes in IHC staining efficacy. Moreover, the peptides do not degrade after deparaffinization or antigen retrieval treatments. This technology may be valuable in creating nationally standardized controls to quantify IHC analytical variability.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / chemistry
  • Epitopes
  • Glass
  • Immunohistochemistry / methods
  • Immunohistochemistry / standards*
  • Mice
  • Molecular Mimicry
  • Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Peptides / chemistry
  • Peptides / standards
  • Quality Control
  • Receptors, Progesterone / metabolism
  • Sensitivity and Specificity


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Epitopes
  • Peptides
  • Receptors, Progesterone