A method for MS(E) differential proteomic analysis of archival formalin-fixed celloidin-embedded human inner ear tissue

Hear Res. 2010 Dec 1;270(1-2):15-20. doi: 10.1016/j.heares.2010.08.003. Epub 2010 Aug 12.


Proteomic analysis of cadaveric formalin-fixed, celloidin-embedded (FFCE) temporal bone tissue has the potential to provide new insights into inner ear disorders. We have developed a liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) method for tissue sections embedded with celloidin. Q-TOF (Quadrupole-time of flight mass spectrometry) MS(E) (mass spectrometry where E represents collision energy) and Identity(E)™ were used in conjunction with nano-UPLC (capillary ultrahigh pressure liquid chromatography) for robust identification and quantification of a large number of proteins. Formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) mouse liver sections were used to evaluate formalin de-cross-linking by five different methods. Unfixed fresh mouse liver tissue was used as a control. Five different methods for preparation of FFPE tissue for MS analysis were compared, as well as four methods for celloidin removal with FFCE mouse liver tissue. The methods judged best were applied to FFCE 20 μm sections of mouse inner ear samples, and FFCE 20 μm human inner ear and human otic capsule bone sections. Three of the five-tissue extraction methods worked equally in detecting peptides and proteins from FFPE mouse liver tissue. The modified Liquid Tissue kit protocol was chosen for further studies. Four different celloidin removal methods were compared and the acetone removal method was chosen for further analysis. These two methods were applied to the analysis of FFCE inner ear and otic capsule sections. Proteins from all major cellular components were detected in the FFCE archival human temporal bone sections. This newly developed technique enables the use of FFCE tissues for proteomic studies.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cadaver
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid*
  • Collodion*
  • Ear, Inner / chemistry*
  • Fixatives*
  • Formaldehyde*
  • Humans
  • Mass Spectrometry*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred CBA
  • Middle Aged
  • Proteins / analysis*
  • Proteomics / methods*
  • Tissue Embedding / methods*
  • Tissue Fixation / methods*


  • Fixatives
  • Proteins
  • Formaldehyde
  • Collodion