Introduction/Objective: Liquid-based cytology (LBC) is advantageous as multiple stained specimens can be prepared and used for additional assays such as immunocytochemical and molecular-pathological investigations. Two types of preservative-fixative solutions (fixatives) are used for nongynecologic specimens used in the BD SurePath-LBC (SP-LBC) method, and their components vary. However, few studies have evaluated the differences in antigen-retaining ability between these fixatives. Therefore, we investigated and compared the antigen-retaining ability of the fixatives in immunocytochemical staining (ICC) under long-term storage conditions. Materials and Methods: Sediments of cultured RAJI cells (derived from Burkitt’s lymphoma) were added to each fixative (red and blue) and stored at room temperature for a specified period (1 h; 1 week; and 1, 3, and 6 months). The specimens were then prepared using the SP-LBC method and subjected to ICC. Positivity rate was calculated using the specimens fixed at room temperature for 1 h as a control. Antibodies against Ki67 expressed in the nucleus and against CD20 and leukocyte common antigen (LCA) expressed on the cell membrane were used. Results: For CD20 and LCA, the positivity rate increased with time in the red fixative compared with that in the control. In the blue fixative, the positivity rate was highest at 1 h and was maintained at a high level throughout the storage period. In contrast, the Ki67 positivity rate was highest at 1 h in both red and blue fixatives and markedly decreased with time. Therefore, although refrigerated (8°C) storage was used, no improvement was noted. Conclusions: Long-term storage is possible for cell membrane antigens at room temperature; however, it is unsuitable for intranuclear antigens. Therefore, we conclude that suitable fixative type and storage temperature differ based on antigen location. Further investigation is warranted.

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