Training in molecular cytopathology testing

P. Maxwell, M. Salto-Tellez*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Training in molecular cytopathology testing is essential in developing and maintaining skills in modern molecular technologies as they are introduced to a universal health care system such as extant in the UK and elsewhere. We review the system in place in Northern Ireland (NI) for molecular testing of solid tumours, as an example to train staff of all grades, including pathologists, clinical scientists, biomedical scientists and equivalent technical grades. We describe training of pathologists as part of the NI Deanery medical curriculum, the NI training programme for scientists and laboratory rotation for Biomedical Scientists. Collectively, the aims of our training are two-fold: to provide a means by which individuals may extend their experience and skills; and to provide and maintain a skilled workforce for service delivery. Through training and competency, we introduce new technologies and tests in response to personalised medicine therapies with a competent workforce. We advocate modifying programmes to suit individual needs for skill development, with formalised courses in pre-analytical, analytical and postanalytical demands of modern molecular pathology. This is of particular relevance for cytopathology in small samples such those from formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded cell blocks. We finally introduce how university courses can augment training and develop a skilled workforce to benefit the delivery of services to our patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5-9
Number of pages5
Issue number1
Early online date17 Nov 2017
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd


  • cytopathology
  • molecular
  • molecular cytopathology
  • training

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Histology


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