I. We are continuing to provide a full range of histo-pathological services for DIR scientists. 1. Histology procedures, such as formalin fixed tissue embedding, sectioning and histology staining. For this purpose, we receive samples in fixative or fresh. These are processed in our facility and embedded in paraffin or OCT component for either paraffin or frozen sections. The paraffin embedded sample can be cut as routine 5 micron thick sections mounted on glass slides, serial sections through entire organ or embryo, or mixed with thick (20-100 micron) and thin (5-10 micron) step sections upon request. Frozen sections are cut in 10 micron thick. The Core provides routine histology staining with Hematoxylin and Eosin according to Harris methods. In addition, we also perform special histology staining, including PAS, Masson tri-chrome, Movat, Elastic Van Gison and Oil-Red O stain. All these services are performed by the Core staff and finished in a timely manner. Most requests are completed within a two week period. In FY-2011, the Core provided these services in a total of 212 requests submitted by 49 customers from 25 PIs/ laboratories. We produced 1,877 tissue blocks and 23,488 histology slides which usually mount 2 or 3 tissue sections on it. Among them, there were 3,575 slides stained with Hematoxylin and Eosin for routine histology and 1,504 slides for other specific staining procedures as mentioned above. 2. Diagnostic pathology. For this service, Core head is involved in discussion of experiments design and sample collection methods. We then provide histology products such as preparation and stain histology slides, evaluate the results, describe the findings and make a scoring sheet with representative photographs. In the most cases, this service will contribute to manuscript submission and we will provide final microscopic figures. We performed these services for 9 scientists including histo-pathological diagnosis, histology evaluations with the score system and provided final images for publications. This resulted in 4 publications in 2010 and 2 in 2011, respectively. 3. Training, consultation and trouble shooting for DIR scientists and fellows in the fields of histo-pathology and immuno-histochemistry. We provide training for tissue processing, embedding and sectioning for paraffin and frozen samples. In addition, we also offer testing for antibodies and for immuno-staining procedures and consultation on immuno-staining problems. We have trained 4 scientists/students in cutting paraffin or frozen sections, tissue processing and immunohistochemstry. II. Improvement of Pathology Core work From the 2011 user survey feedback, we thank all positive responses. We have discussed the issues that concerns products turn over time and required all staff to understand the procedures, we should return the works to our customers within 2 weeks period in general, except urgent requests that can be arranged with the priority manner. We have started using slide printers to print glass slide label from 2009. This is not only made slides better looking but also improved accuracy of tissue identification to avoid confusion. We also purchased a tissue cassette label printer in 2010. After all of these efforts, we are now able to make all digital input and output through our products with printed labels. These labels can be used to transfer the information from tissue containers to cassettes and to slide directly to avoid error. We updated cutting and staining procedures for the best result. We have synchronized all our routines and specific staining procedures, in particularly, for accurate procedure times, temperatures and specific tissue handlings. Now, our products are much more stable and the results are good and satisfied our customers. For sectioning, all staff understands the requests and follows the work sheet instructions. In addition, we had accurately recorded log book and kept documents for sample acceptance, processing and project completion date. Core head has personally contacted DIR scientists, arranging meetings if necessary to convince all submit their histopathology requests to the Core. From feedback of purchasing order tracking system (POTS), there were still some orders sent out to Histoserve, Inc and AmericanHitoLabs, Inc for histology services. However, the amount has been reduced to $28,019 from $62,012 compared to previous fiscal year at same period. We also contacted other PIs and laboratories who are not our regular customers to encourage them use our core facility. In addition, we had poster shown at the NHLBI Scientific Retreat.

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