Transplant pathological study is the main research focus in our laboratory.

The Experimental Transplant Pathology Laboratory was established as a joint venture between Multi-organ Transplant Program (MOTP) at London Health Sciences Centre and Department of Pathology at University of Western Ontario (UWO). The laboratory is located in the Department of Pathology at UWO (DSB 4032) and began its operation in July 2000. Dr. Bertha Garcia, Chair and Chief of the Department of Pathology, is the principal investigator of this laboratory. The research focus of our laboratory is to develop and provide routine histology, immunopathology, molecular pathology and other techniques to the researchers involved in experimental transplantation research. In addition, our laboratory provides education to the trainees with regards to the tissue preparation techniques and the pathological changes with respect to the transplantation related research projects.

The various groups involved in transplant research will investigate tissues from renal, cardiac, liver, intestinal, and other types of allo- or xeno-transplantation. Our laboratory processes these tissues for routine histology, immunoperoxidase staining, immunofluorescence, in-situ hybridization, apoptosis detection, electron microscopy, image processing and analysis and other. This unified approach will provide a reliable and consistent system for determination of tissue pathology as well as detection of cellular or extracellular proteins and mRNA.

Multiple staining techniques have been established and used routinely in our laboratory for the mechanism studies of transplanted pig or monkey organs or tissues in the kidney xeno- and allo-transplantation models. They include immunohistochemical stains for IgA, IgG, IgM, C3 and fibrin deposition, as well as lymphocyte phenotypes: CD4, CD3, CD20, and CD68. Furthermore, we recently developed C4d, C5b-9, DC-sign, hDAF, Blood Group antibody markers in the primate transplant models, as well as the regular immunohistological markers in dog transplant organs or tissues. Our laboratory has also performed immunohistochemical stains for CMV, EBV and HSV in experimental xenotransplant recipients and has coordinated the electro-microscopic examination of transplanted xenografts. Furthermore, the TUNEL technique is performed for apoptosis study, and various staining markers in rodent transplantation models have been successfully developed for the mechanism studies of cellular and humoral rejection.

In summary, our laboratory is available to all transplant researchers affiliated with MOTP, UWO and all its affiliated hospitals and research institutes. Dr. Garcia has been involved in the interpretation and quality control and has considerable expertise in immunopathology. In the long term, this laboratory will continue to strive for efficiency and cost-effectiveness. All the researchers who use this facility can obtain technical and intellectual support effectively reducing histology and immunohistology costs for individual projects to a minimum.

Dept. Pathology at UWO

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Dept. Pathology at LHSC