RE: Microwave Decalcification

From:"Montague, Donna C"

J. Kiernan noted in his book on histochemical methods (3rd edition Chapter 2
don't have the book in front of me so can't give you the page reference),
that buffered formic acid could be used in the microwave to accelaeate
decalcification, but cautioned that temperatrues should not exceed 55 oC,
time of 30 minutes and the pH should be adjusted to 2.0 with NaOH (aq) prior
to heating. I have not tried this yet. Perhaps you'll get other feedback.
Good luck, Donna Montague, M.S.
Research Associate
Physiology/Biophysics and Orthopaedic Surgery
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
(501) 603-1239

-----Original Message-----
From: []
Sent: Friday, April 26, 2002 9:17 AM
Subject: Microwave Decalcification

I have been looking at the effects of decalcifying rodent feumr/knee joints
in the microwave with formic acid and have found that the process has left
the marrow looking somewhat "muddy" after staining with H&E.  The nuclei are
not crisp at all, and I have found that the effect worsens the longer the
bones remain in the microwave.  Any suggestions?  Should I try a different
decalcifying agent?  Or does this effect accompany all specimens decalcified
in the microwave?  Thanks in advance.

Kevin Jackson
Aventis Pharmaceuticals
Associate Scientist
Anatomic Patholgy (US)
(908) 231-2986

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