Histology and image analysis

Concept Life Sciences offers a complete range of routine and specialist histology and molecular tissue probing services.

Our highly skilled histologists are adept in tissue processing to wax, single and multiplex IHC (immunohistochemistry)/IF (immunofluorescence), RNAscope, slide scanning and image analysis for target discovery, pre-clinical in vivo phases and as clinical trial support services.

Extracting the critical data you need

Concept’s expert histology team has the experience, skill and specialist equipment to provide fast turnaround times on routine histology while delivering on technically demanding, customized multiplex projects.

Our dedicated histopathology lab can support all stages of tissue processing and analysis. Highly-skilled histologists ensure all samples are optimally prepared for downstream multiplexing and precise image analysis.

Customizable and flexible protocols meet the unique staining requirements of our clients. Providing multi-staining assays of up to nine different targets in the same section (8-plex + DAPI), we also combine multiplex IF and RNAscope where required, allowing you to extract more information whilst conserving tissue.

Via our customer-centric approach, we offer custom multiplex biomarker panels using a large range of optimized markers across a range of species. Passionate to drive science forward, we continue to develop the list of targets we can detect. Using the latest technologies and automated platforms we ensure robust, high quality and repeatable data outputs.

Dedicated to working collaboratively with you, our histology department places high value on client communication during all phases of a study. All our staff are trained and work to GCP for laboratory standards.

With a focus on transparency and data integrity we can help you overcome complex challenges on your path to success.


Concept provides routine histology services to support drug discovery and development clients at all stages of their pipeline. We provide support at every stage in the histopathological process for light and fluorescence microscopy, from bespoke tissue trimming, fixation, processing to wax, embedding, sectioning, staining as well as slide scanning, image analysis and reporting.

Our histologists understand your scientific objectives, timeline and budget to deliver quality, efficient data in a program tailored to your needs.

Specialist Histology Capabilities

  • Leica Biosystems Bond III
  • Leica Biosystems Bond Rx
  • Ziess Axioscope and Olympus BX51
  • Akoya BioSciences PhenoImager HT
  • Automated Quantitative Pathology Imaging System
  • Leica Microsystems THUNDER Imager 3D Live Cell & 3D Cell Culture & 3D Assay

Multiplex histology

Concept provides multiplex IHC and IF assays to enable detection of multiple targets in one section. We can co-localize multiple markers within the same samples, allowing you to extract more information whilst conserving tissue.

Our automated approach uses Leica robots to ensure a consistent, reproducible and high-throughput service that can be adapted for multiple protocols and detection strategies.

Key advantages of IF multiplex:

  • Identifying multiple targets in the same section
  • Up to eight fluorescent endpoints + counterstain (9-plex)
  • Multiple antibodies from the same species
  • Conservation of precious tissue samples
  • Target validation and distribution data

Our ethos

Concept’s ethos is to work closely with our clients to understand their histology requirements and to tailor services to specifically meet these needs. We utilize the Akoya Biosciences PhenoImager HT to generate high quality images of IHC, IF, RNAscope and multiplex images.

We have a wealth of experience in providing IHC/IF screening of normal and diseased tissue, using our ever-growing range of optimized antibodies and panels.

Tissue samples

To support our clients to preserve precious patient samples, and as a unique resource for in vitro drug testing and early discovery research, Concept can source ethically-approved tissue through our industry partners and our working relationship with Lothian NHS Research Scotland Bioresource. We can provide a wide range of diseased and healthy tissues in fresh, frozen and FFPE formats as well as Tissue Microarrays (TMAs).

If required, we can also provide Clinical Histopathologist review of samples, and provide bespoke tissue requests.


Concept Life Sciences offers ACD Bio’s RNAscope, a novel multiplex nucleic acid in situ hybridization (ISH) assay, to detect and visualize gene expression within intact cells.

RNAscope is highly configurable and works on both formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) and frozen tissue samples. The assay is a major advance on traditional in situ RNA detection techniques, offering lower background noise with a single RNA molecule level of sensitivity.

We use RNAscope to help clients with:

  • Pre-clinical assessment of efficacy and toxicity
  • Visualizing the expression of target(s) across multiple tissues
  • Validating mechanisms of action of novel targets within disease models in tissue samples
  • Assessing tumor heterogeneity and the tumor micro-environment
  • Studying targets where there is limited availability of reliable antibodies

Our teams also use RNAscope as a biomarker or companion diagnostic tool. Detecting biomarkers or targets in situ allows our clients to combine molecular information with histopathology for easier disease classification.

The assay is compatible with conventional chromogenic dyes for bright-field microscopy or fluorescent dyes for multiplex analysis.

Image analysis

Concept’s image analysis services are ideal for clients working in pharmaceutical R&D, pathology review and biomarker research.

We work closely with our clients and partners to provide a package of precision histopathology image analysis services for target quantification and qualification of IHC, IF and RNAscope marker staining in cells and tissues, across multiple image platforms, including:

  • Indica labs
  • Visiopharm
  • Oncotopix®
  • Definiens

Want to find out more?

Our multi-disciplinary teams mitigate risk by employing knowledge, foresight and thought leadership to all our client’s diverse programs enabling the highest chance of success. Get in touch to find out how we can support you.