[Histonet] Frozen IF Specimen Storage: Is -80 C really necessary; will -20 C work?

Rene J Buesa rjbuesa <@t> yahoo.com
Mon Nov 11 10:09:02 CST 2013

I really do not know of any study comparing -20ºC vs -80ºC or if this -80ºC is the result of a commercially driven  "ideal" storage method. I advise you to check about any bibliographic references BUT meanwhile I also advise you to keep your precious and irreplaceable material at -80ºC. I do not think that you should risk losing all your samples just to work "on the cheap". 
I always kept my tumor bank and IF samples at -80ºC and when our freezer also died year ago, I was lucky enough to get the approval to buy a new one.
 Do not rush to save money
René J.

From: DAVID HENDERSON <dhenders01 <@t> msn.com>
To: "histonet <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu" <histonet <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu> 
Sent: Sunday, November 10, 2013 6:56 PM
Subject: [Histonet] Frozen IF Specimen Storage: Is -80 C really necessary; will -20 C work?

We routinely store our frozen IF specimens (renal and skin biopsies) embedded in OCT and sealed in plastic bags for at least 4 yrs in a -80C freezer. Cases that are positively diagnosed by the pathologist, are used as positive controls for subsequent IF staining. In practice, most positive controls are used within 1-2 years of their original storage.

Our -80C freezer has died, and we are temporarily storing in a different -80C freezer in another building on campus. My supervisor asked me to research whether or not a -20C freezer will suffice for our storage needs, or must we anti up for the much more costly -80C replacement or repair. 

I would appreciate receiving suggestions backed by experience, or educated thoughts about the advisability of -20C storage of specimens for future IF staining.

David Henderson, HTL
RML, Tulsa, OK

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