Tissue Processing (2016-17) - revision 1


David Muskett


Lead Biomedical Scientist Cellular Pathology

Reviews (3)

Nicole O'Doherty
Nicole O'Doherty
Kathleen Wilkie


This short course is designed for staff working in cellular pathology.


The aim of the course is to discuss the use and purposes of tissue processing in cellular pathology.


The equipment focus on on the Leica ASP300 and the Leica peloris tissue processors.


The aim of tissue processing is to prepare tissue in a supporting media ready to be cut in to thin sections, so that very thin slices of the tissue can be cut in order to observe individual cells under the microscope. This means being able to produce slices (sections) at a thickness of between 2 and 6µm, about the thickness of a single cell or 1/10th the thickness of a human hair.  The most commonly used embedding media is paraffin wax. When solid, paraffin wax has a consistency very similar to that of the tissue itself and this assists with the subsequent sectioning process. Wax however is immiscible with water so the tissue can not simply be transferred from water to wax. Instead, the tissue must transfer through a number of intermediary steps until it is able to be impregnated with wax.


The quality of processing is monitored at microtomy and via processing.


Tissue Processors are alarmed up to the hospital security system so that staff can be alerted in times of equipment failure.


An audit of which racks are placed on which processor is made by photographing the racks. The details of the processor number are added to the photograph.

Course content

  • Fixation

  • Dehydrating tissues

  • Clearing the tissue

  • Wax impregnation

  • Machine reagent change and management - Peloris

  • Instrument house keeping - Peloris

  • Machine reagent change and management - ASP300

  • Instrument housekeeping - ASP300

  • Summary

  • Further information

Interested? Enroll to this course right now.

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