At present, limiting factors in the use of tissue microarrays (TMAs) for high-throughput analysis relate to the visual evaluation of the staining patterns of each of the individual cores in the array and to the subsequent input of the results into a database. Such a database is essential to correlate the data with tumor type and outcome, and to evaluate the performance against other markers achieved in separate experiments. So far, these steps are mostly performed by hand, and consequently are time-consuming and potentially prone to bias and errors, respectively. This paper describes the use of a high-resolution flat-bed scanner for digitization of TMAs with a resolution of about 5 × 5 μm2. The arrays are acquired, the positions of the tissue cores are automatically determined, and measurement data including the images of the individual cores are archived. The program provides digital zooming of arrays for interactive verification of the results and rapid linkage of individual core images to data sets of other markers derived from the same array. Performance of the system was compared to manual classification for a representative set of arrays containing colorectal tumors stained with different markers.
Vrolijk, J., Sloos, W., Mesker, W., Franken, P., Fodde, R., Morreau, H., & Tanke, H. (2003). Automated acquisition of stained tissue microarrays for high-throughput evaluation of molecular targets. Journal of Molecular Diagnostics, 5(3), 160–167. https://doi.org/10.1016/S1525-1578(10)60468-0