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Technical improvements in the immunoperoxidase study of renal biopsy specimens.
  1. A J Howie,
  2. J Gregory,
  3. R A Thompson,
  4. M A Adkins,
  5. A J Niblett
  1. Department of Pathology, University of Birmingham.


    Sixty five renal biopsy specimens were used to compare a direct immunofluorescence technique on frozen sections with immunoperoxidase techniques on paraffin wax sections. For the immunoperoxidase techniques, dewaxed sections were treated with protease at 37 degrees C. Sections were examined at intervals on a microscope and digestion was stopped when plasma was removed from glomerular capillary loops. This permitted intense staining of immunoproteins on immunoperoxidase. There was agreement between immunoperoxidase and immunofluorescence in the staining for IgG, IgA, and IgM in 50 biopsy specimens and discordant findings did not affect the diagnosis. Immunoperoxidase did not detect C3 in 16 biopsy specimens. Findings with antiserum to another complement component, C9, detected by immunoperoxidase correlated with C3 findings detected by immunofluorescence in 17 biopsy specimens. It is concluded that microscopical observation of the progress of digestion permits optimal staining by immunoperoxidase methods, thus overcoming the problem of variability in proteolytic digestion of sections. Inconsistency in the demonstration of complement deposition can be avoided by staining for C9 rather than C3.

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