Current Hematologic Malignancy Reports

, Volume 14, Issue 5, pp 368–375 | Cite as

Immunohistochemistry Innovations for Diagnosis and Tissue-Based Biomarker Detection

  • Narittee Sukswai
  • Joseph D. KhouryEmail author
Molecular Testing and Diagnostics (J Khoury, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Molecular Testing and Diagnostics


Purpose of Review

Immunohistochemistry is an integral technique for tissue-based diagnostics and biomarker detection with broad worldwide adoption. Advances in core chemistries, antibody design, and automation have ushered unprecedented sensitivity, specificity, and reproducibility in immunohistochemistry assays. As a result, clinical immunohistochemistry assays that utilize dual-color approaches and mutation-specific antibodies provide novel tools in clinical diagnostics that until recently were in the realm of investigational research. This review provides an overview of innovations in clinical immunohistochemistry assays with emphasis on those used for patients with hematopoietic neoplasms.

Recent Findings

Advances in clinical-grade immunohistochemistry techniques have allowed labs to develop and validate multiplex assays that improve diagnostic utility—such as CD5/PAX5 and TCF4/CD123 dual-color stains—and have the potential to enhance the specificity of biomarker detection. In addition, the increased availability of immunohistochemistry assays that detect mutant proteins (e.g., BRAF V600E and IDH1 R132H) provides a helpful replacement and/or adjunct for molecular testing. These techniques are highly reproducible, entail reasonable technical and interpretation complexity, and are relatively cost-effective, making them valuable novel tools in modern cancer care.


Multiplex and mutation-specific immunohistochemistry assays represent important innovations that provide improved utility in the context of personalized medicine and targeted therapy.


Dual immunohistochemistry Multiplex immunohistochemistry Mutation-specific antibody BRAF V600E CD123 IDH1 LEF1 PAX5 TCF4 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of HematopathologyThe University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer CenterHoustonUSA
  2. 2.Department of PathologyChulalongkorn UniversityBangkokThailand

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