Cover Letter: Run 123/52

Run 122 IHC / Run 51 ISH

Reports are now available at webserver Participant Login

PD-L1 reports are available by logging in to Qualitopix Participant Login

 Run 123 IHC / Run 52 ISH

  • Slides despatch dates- 13th – 17th August
  • Closing Date for return of slides- 14th September
  • Slides post-marked after this date may not be assessed. Late receipts are logged and reviewed by the scheme.
  • If you do not receive the slides by 24th August (within UK), or 31st August (overseas), contact the office as soon as possible at or Tel: +44 2074157065
  • Address label templates can be downloaded at:    
  • Module specific instruction datasheets can be accessed from ‘Instructions’ (top right hand corner) on the webserver Participant Login area. The instructions also provide information relating to the UK NEQAS material, such as tissue type, pathology, and fixation. Where required, a template example is also provided on the orientation of the samples for when interpretative scores are also required.


Important Information for the Distributed EQA Slides

  • UK NEQAS sections will be positioned in the upper area of the slide to allow you to cut and place your in-house sections on the lower part of the NEQAS slide as shown in the example below. (Please note, example below is for illustration of the positioning of sections only, so not all NEQAS slides will consist of 3 cores as shown).

  • NEQAS use TOMO slides, which may differ in the hydrophilic/hydrophobic nature you regularly use in your own laboratories. The scheme therefore recommends the following steps to ensure optimal handling ahead of staining:
    • After placing your control tissue in the correct area, allow to drain thoroughly to ensure no droplets of water remain under the tissue sections. Then bake the slide in a temperature controlled oven at either 37°C overnight OR 55-60°C for 1 hour, and follow with your usual staining procedure.
  • It is your responsibility to ensure that the slides are stained immediately after arrival in your laboratory or stored in a fridge until staining takes place, to ensure the best results. Ideally, treat the NEQAS slides as though they are referral cases, and therefore, no changes to the methodology you would use in your routine clinical practice.
  • Separate in-house controls are still required for the Cytology Module cytospin samples.
  • All slides except the Cytology cytospin slides will arrive unbaked. The FFPE NEQAS cell block samples are unbaked to allow you to place your own sample to the bottom area of the slide.

Module Specific Announcements

  • Breast HER2 ISH: The scheme requires that you take an image of your stained CISH and FISH slides for record. Images of all cores should be taken. Ideally, FISH images should be taken using the separate filters.
  • At the present time you are not requested to send your images to the scheme unless requested to, following the technical part of the ISH assessment.
  • Provide a single example of an in-house control. A separate in-house slide is accepted if it is necessary for you to adjust the pre-treatment/digestion to suit the tissue.
  • It is also acceptable to provide your interpretive counts from both NEQAS slides. Please indicate when you enter your methodology data which cores were used to carry out the analysis, so that the assessment team knows which sections to review when carrying out the technical part of the assessment.
  • Remember to use an anti-fade mountant and to seal around the coverslip. Please contact the scheme for further guidance.
  • Breast Hormone Receptor: Antibody Requested = PR
  • PD-L1 (NSCLC): Separate details and instructions for the PD-L1 (NSCLC) module will also be sent out separately to participating laboratories.

Gold & Secondary Antibodies Run 123:

General Pathology:

  • Gold Antibody Requested (A) = CK20
  • 2nd Antigen (C) = BerEP4


  • Gold Antibody Requested (L) = Ki-67
  • 2nd Antigen (N) = CD15


  • Gold Antibody Requested (G) = Synaptophysin
  • 2nd Antigen (J)= Neurofilament Protein


  • Gold Antibody Requested (R) = CD45
  • 2nd Antigen (T) = ER


  • Gold Antibody Requested (V) =CD117
  • 2nd Antigen (Vb) =SMA


  • (Y) = MSH2
  • (Yb) = MSH6

Breast Hormone Receptor:

  • Antibody Requested (E) = PR

Other Important Notices

  • Please ensure that your Participant Code is indicated on all slides and the slide boxes. The slides should be returned in the correct slide transport boxes that are colour coded by module.
  • Request for extra slides: Extra slides will be available up to one week prior to the closing date; i.e. by 7th September. You must state your reason for requiring extra slides.
  • Antibody not stocked: If you do not stock a requested antibody you are required to contact the scheme for an alternative. A non-submission of slides because you do not use a marker, without indicating or contacting UK NEQAS ICC & ISH, will result in a score of zero (0) and a fail. This will then be included when running poor performance reports (UK clinical only).
  • Please e-mail the scheme, with your Participation Code for the alternative antibody that you require: Do not use an alternative marker unless you have been given one by the scheme.
  • Return of previous run slides: Only send back previous run slides if you require a reassessment. However, please note, that you are required to retain your previous NEQAS slides by your accrediting body or for any reason should UK NEQAS require them.




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