“…the key word about Retriever is reproducibility. Due to fully automatic processing the stainings are always the same, whether they are done within a few hours or a few months apart…”
Not only for diagnostics, but also for research (and perhaps especially for research pathology), standardization of staining is the key word.
Retriever instrumentation that enables epitope retrieval by the push of a button, has been created precisely to assure standard staining. In contrast to simple “pressure-cookers”, Retriever allows proper recovery of epitopes on formalin-fixed (routine pathology sections) while preserving tissue morphology, shapes of cells, shape of the cell's nucleus, and always giving you the same quality and degree of fixed tissue recovery.
Since its launch in 2006 it has been further refined, and today may well be the most advanced and recommended epitope recovery unit.
Retriever is more than a “pressure cooker”. A chip on board the machine controls the profile of heating, pressure and the length of the cycle optimal for most of the routine formalin-fixed, paraffin embedded tissues. Routine pathology tissues may differ quite substantially by the degree of fixation, temperature during embedding, etc. The Retriever is the result of over 10 years of work on the optimization of the parameters for the best method of unmasking of the antigens in a wide variety of tissues.
First, Retriever requires no special training. Even a new trainee in the lab can use it. Second, it allows simultaneously using several different buffers (often some of your antibodies require citrate buffer, other – acid citrate or – EDTA) within one cycle, in one machine. Third, it gives high reproducibility of results, which allows comparsions of stainings performed at two widely-spaced time points. Fourth, it is very reliable. Since first production only 2 machines have had to be replaced. So you can expect many years of uninterrupted work with Retriever.
Proper epitope recovery may be critical for your conclusions on protein expression. The pictures show staining for E-cadherin on human small intestine tissue without processing in Retriever (top) and with the processing on Retriever (bottom).