Article Text

Download PDFPDF

In situ hybridisation of albumin mRNA in normal liver and hepatocellular carcinoma with a digoxigenin labelled oligonucleotide probe.
  1. G I Murray,
  2. P J Paterson,
  3. S W Ewen,
  4. W T Melvin
  1. Department of Pathology, University of Aberdeen, Fosterhill.


    AIMS: To study the localisation and distribution of albumin mRNA in normal liver and hepatocellular carcinoma by in situ hybridisation with an oligonucleotide probe. METHODS: A 51 base oligonucleotide was synthesised from a sequence at the 5' end of the human albumin gene and the probe was labelled at its 3' end with digoxigenin 11-dUTP. Formalin fixed, wax embedded sections of liver biopsy specimens were used to study the localisation and distribution of albumin mRNA. After in situ hybridisation the bound probe was visualised using a digoxigenin antibody conjugated with alkaline phosphatase. RESULTS: In normal liver albumin mRNA was detected in hepatocytes and no positive signal was observed in biliary epithelium, vascular endothelium, or Kupffer cells. In 75% (9/12) of the hepatocellular carcinomas studied a positive hybridisation signal was observed in tumour cells. CONCLUSIONS: Albumin mRNA can be detected in sections of formalin fixed, wax embedded liver, a digoxigenin labelled probe is ideally suited for in situ hybridisation of liver because there is no background from the detection system. The identification of albumin mRNA may be a useful marker of hepatocellular carcinoma, and the demonstration of albumin mRNA by in situ hybridisation overcomes the potential background problem associated with albumin immunohistochemistry.

    Statistics from

    Request Permissions

    If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.