Microsatellite Instability Testing and Its Role in Colorectal Cancer


Title: Microsatellite Instability Testing and Its Role in Colorectal Cancer

Originally Aired: Monday, November 19

Time: 1:00 p.m. ET

Presenter: Alexander Craig Mackinnon, MD, PhD

Unless otherwise noted, P.A.C.E.™ accreditation will expire six months after the live webinar.

Current State and Method Comparison

As labs receive more requests to evaluate microsatellite instability (MSI) — a hyper-mutation phenotype resulting from mutations in one or more mismatch repair (MMR) proteins — they’ll need to be able to perform the tests accurately and in a timely manner. However, traditional techniques for MSI testing are often challenging to perform. They require highly experienced operators and analysis of normal tissue components since the traditional biomarkers are not tumor specific.

This P.A.C.E.-accredited Fisher Healthcare webinar will be led by Alexander Craig Mackinnon, MD, PhD, who has evaluated a novel set of MSI biomarkers with a fully automated testing platform that can make MSI testing accessible to virtually any lab. He will provide an update on the current state of MSI testing, including rapidly evolving clinical applications and available methodologies. Dr. Mackinnon will also present performance data from a cross-platform comparison of immunohistochemistry (IHC) and two different molecular MSI evaluation methods. He’ll share results for 50 colorectal cancer samples tested by all three methods.

Learning Objectives

This webinar will help you:

  • Describe the two main strategies for MSI testing
  • Identify the reasons and clinical applications for performing MSI testing and the difference between MSI-high and microsatellite stable (MSS) results
  • Analyze the performance of three MSI testing technologies: IHC and two molecular testing methods

Watch On-Demand        Download Slides (PDF, 2.31MB)

This webinar is produced by Whitehat Communications, a provider of continuing education programs in clinical laboratory sciences that has been approved by the ASCLS P.A.C.E. Program. One P.A.C.E. credit hour will be provided for this complimentary, basic-level program.



Alexander Craig Mackinnon, MD, PhD

Dr. Mackinnon is an Associate Professor of Pathology at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee and the current Director of the school’s Clinical and Translational Research Core Laboratory, which he established in 2010. He is also an attending physician at Froedtert Memorial Lutheran Hospital. He received his master’s degree in neuroscience from Northwestern University, where he spent time researching Alzheimer’s disease, and both his MD and PhD in cell and structural biology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He completed his residency in anatomical pathology and his postdoctoral and clinical fellowships in cardiovascular pathology and molecular genetic pathology at the University of Chicago.

Dr. Mackinnon’s research interests are in personalized medicine and the pathogenesis and molecular genetics of various cancer types. He has authored more than 100 peer-reviewed manuscripts, been an invited speaker at both national and international meetings, and received numerous awards and honors. He is a member of both CAP and AMP and is currently on the editorial board of Annals of Diagnostic Pathology.