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Analytical Cellular Pathology
Volume 24 (2002), Issue 1, Pages 5-15

Diagnostic DNA-Flow- vs. -Image-Cytometry in Effusion Cytology

Helma Motherby,1 Natalia Pomjanski,1 Mary Kube,1 Alexandra Boros,1 Thomas Heiden,2 Bernhard Tribukait,2 and Alfred Böcking1

1Institute of Cytopathology, Heinrich‐Heine‐University, Moorenstr. 5, D‐40225 Düsseldorf, Germany
2Department of Medical Radiobiology, Karolinska Institute, S‐10401 Stockholm, Sweden

Received 1 November 2000; Accepted 1 April 2002

Copyright © 2002 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Aims: To determine the sensitivity and specificity of flow‐ and image‐cytometry for the detection of DNA‐aneuploidy as a marker for malignant cells in effusions. Methods: 200 effusions (80 tumor cell‐positive, 74 negative and 46 cytologically equivocal) were stained with DAPI‐SR for DNA‐flow‐ and with Feulgen‐Pararosaniline for ‐image‐cytometry. They were measured using a PAS‐flow‐cytometer and an AutoCyte‐QUIC‐DNA‐workstation according to the ESACP consensus reports for DNA‐flow‐ and ‐image‐cytometry, respectively [7,23,29,49]. Results: Sensitivity of DNA‐aneuploidy for the identification of malignant cells was 32.1% for DNA‐flow‐ and 75.0% for ‐image‐cytometry, specificity of ‐euploidy in benign cells was 100.0% for both methods. Positive predictive value of DNA‐aneuploidy for the identification of malignant cells was 100.0% for both techniques, negative predictive value of DNA‐euploidy was 48.6% for DNA‐flow‐ and 72.0% for ‐image‐cytometry. Conclusions: Searching for DNA‐aneuploidy as a diagnostic marker for neoplastic cells in serous effusions image‐cytometry revealed superior sensitivity as compared with monoparametric flow cytometry.