RE: [Histonet] Zinc formalin and 10% NBF

From:"Smith, Allen"

   It's not the periodic table, but the electromotive series.  Ions of
elements at the top of the series will replace free elements (only on the
surface of any but the tiniest particles) lower in the series.  The ion is
reduced to the free element and the lower down free element is oxidized to
the ion.
   Zinc is pretty low in the electromotive series, so many ions can be
reduced by zinc metal, converting the zinc metal to zinc ions.
Unfortunately, the zinc in tissues is there as ions already.  
   Any metal low enough in the series to reduce zinc ions to zinc metal
would be such a good reducing agent that it would reduce water to hydrogen.

Allen A. Smith, Ph.D.
Professor of Anatomy
Barry University
School of Graduate Medical Sciences
            Podiatric Medicine and Surgery
Miami Shores, Florida


-----Original Message-----
From: histonet-bounces@lists.utsouthwestern.edu
[mailto:histonet-bounces@lists.utsouthwestern.edu] On Behalf Of Kemlo
Sent: Tuesday, April 27, 2004 2:43 AM
To: jkiernan@uwo.ca; Wendy England
Cc: histonet@pathology.swmed.edu
Subject: Re: [Histonet] Zinc formalin and 10% NBF

Can't you test the residual fixative for the presence or absence of zinc?
My Chemistry is not what it was but can't you do something with an element
and the double decomposition of a salt? Something to do with an element
higher up or lower down the Periodic Table that displaces an element from
a salt that is the other way round, can't remember. But NBF doesn't contain
the heavy metal does it?

Why is it important to know? All I can remember is that zinc formalin made
the tissue brittle, or was that lead? The nuclear stain was rather deep
too. Hope that helps.



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