Laser Capture Microdissection in Proteomics


Laser capture microdissection or laser‐assisted microdissection techniques allow the purification or enrichment of selected cell types from heterogeneous tissue sections prior to downstream analysis of DNA, RNA or protein.

Keywords: proteomics; laser capture microdissection; laser‐assisted microdissection; two‐dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis; Western blotting

Figure 1.

Example of laser capture microdissection of a proximal tubule from a hematoxylin‐and‐eosin stained section of normal kidney showing (a) the intact section of renal cortex, (b) an enlarged area of proximal tubules, (c) the same area following microdissection of a proximal tubule and (d) the microdissected proximal tubule on the transfer cap.



Banks RE, Dunn MJ, Forbes MA, et al. (1999) The potential use of laser capture microdissection to selectively obtain distinct populations of cells for proteomic analysis: preliminary findings. Electrophoresis 20: 689–700.

Craven RA, Totty N, Harnden P, Selby PJ and Banks RE (2002) Laser capture microdissection and two‐dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis: evaluation of tissue preparation and sample limitations. American Journal of Pathology 160: 815–822.

Emmert‐Buck MR, Bonner RF, Smith PD, et al. (1996) Laser capture microdissection. Science 274: 998–1001.

Emmert‐Buck MR, Gillespie JW, Paweletz CP, et al. (2000) An approach to proteomic analysis of human tumors. Molecular Carcinogenesis 27: 158–165.

Kolble K (2000) The LEICA microdissection system: design and applications. Journal of Molecular Medicine 78: B24–B25.

Paweletz CP, Charboneau L, Bichsel VE, et al. (2001) Reverse phase protein microarrays which capture disease progression show activation of pro‐survival pathways at the cancer invasion front. Oncogene 20: 1981–1989.

Paweletz CP, Ornstein DK, Roth MJ, et al. (2000) Loss of annexin 1 correlates with early onset of tumorigenesis in esophageal and prostate carcinoma. Cancer Research 60: 6293–6297.

Schutze K and Lahr G (1998) Identification of expressed genes by laser‐mediated manipulation of single cells. Nature Biotechnology 16: 737–742.

Simone NL, Remaley AT, Charboneau L, et al. (2000) Sensitive immunoassay of tissue cell proteins procured by laser capture microdissection. American Journal of Pathology 156: 445–452.

Wright Jr GL, Cazares LH, Leung S‐M, et al. (1999) Proteinchip surface enhanced laser desorption/ionization (SELDI) mass spectrometry: a novel protein biochip technology for detection of prostate cancer biomarkers in complex protein mixtures. Prostate Cancer and Prostatic Diseases 2: 264–276.

Further Reading

Ahram M, Best CJ, Flaig MJ, et al. (2002) Proteomic analysis of human prostate cancer. Molecular Carcinogenesis 33: 9–15.

Bohm M, Wieland I, Schutze K and Rubben H (1997) Microbeam MOMeNT: non‐contact laser microdissection of membrane‐mounted native tissue. American Journal of Pathology 151: 63–67.

Eggeling F von, Davies H, Lomas L, et al. (2000) Tissue‐specific microdissection coupled with ProteinChip array technologies: applications in cancer research. Biotechniques 29: 1066–1070.

Fend F and Raffeld M (2000) Laser capture microdissection in pathology. Journal of Clinical Pathology 53: 666–672.

Jones MB, Krutzsch H, Shu H, et al. (2002) Proteomic analysis and identification of new biomarkers and therapeutic targets for invasive ovarian cancer. Proteomics 2: 76–84.

Lawrie LC, Curran S, McLeod HL, Fothergill JE and Murray GI (2001) Application of laser capture microdissection and proteomics in colon cancer. Molecular Pathology 54: 253–258.

Maitra A, Wistuba II and Gazdar AF (2001) Microdissection and the study of cancer pathways. Current Molecular Medicine 1: 153–162.

Natkunam Y, Rouse RV, Zhu S, Fisher C and van De RM (2000) Immunoblot analysis of CD34 expression in histologically diverse neoplasms. American Journal of Pathology 156: 21–27.

Ornstein DK, Englert C, Gillespie JW, et al. (2000) Characterization of intracellular prostate‐specific antigen from laser capture microdissected benign and malignant prostatic epithelium. Clinical Cancer Research 6: 353–356.

Palmer‐Toy DE, Sarracino DA, Sgroi D, LeVangie R and Leopold PE (2000) Direct acquisition of matrix‐assisted laser desorption/ionization time‐of‐flight mass spectra from laser capture microdissected tissues. Clinical Chemistry 46: 1513–1516.

Paweletz CP, Gillespie JW, Ornstein DK, et al. (2000) Rapid protein display profiling of cancer progression directly from human tissue using a protein biochip. Drug Development Research 49: 34–42.

Web Links

University of Chicago (a useful website containing links to the main relevant sites)

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How to Cite close
Banks, Rosamonde E, Craven, Rachel A, and Selby, Peter J(Sep 2006) Laser Capture Microdissection in Proteomics. In: eLS. John Wiley & Sons Ltd, Chichester. [doi: 10.1002/9780470015902.a0006206]