Re: wanted, if possible, Paragon stain

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Gayle Callis asks:

>>Is the Paragon stain made anymore? Supplier? Is there a recipe for this 
staining solution?<<

I think this is the formula you want.

Bob Richmond
Samurai Pathologist
Knoxville TN

PURPOSE:  This traditional frozen section stain takes less time than H & E, 
and stains mucins (including tumor mucins) metachromatically.

SPECIMEN:  Fresh frozen sections cut in a refrigerated microtome (cryostat) 
and attached to slides.


1.  Flood a few drops of the stain solution onto a horizontal slide, or stain 
vertically in a Coplin jar or other suitable container.

2.  Wash with tap water.

3.  Coverslip with water for immediate examination if desired.

4.  Dehydrate, clear, and mount in resin.

RESULT:  Toluidine blue stains nuclei blue, and mucins various metachromatic 
purples. The basic fuchsin provides a contrasting deep red cytoplasmic stain. 
 Preparations do not keep indefinitely in ordinary mounting media, but may be 

REAGENTS AND SUPPLIES:  This product used to be made by Paragon C. & C. Co. 
and is often informally called Paragon stain. The formula given here was 
taken from the 1981 Paragon bottle label.
     Dissolve 730 mg of toluidine blue O and 270 mg of basic fuchsin together 
in 100 mL of 30% alcohol (reagent alcohol or pure ethanol may be used). Use a 
magnetic stirrer but do not use heat. The solution has a long shelf life at 
room temperature. Record the preparation of each batch, including dye lot.

SAFETY AND ENVIRONMENTAL:  The dyes are extremely messy. They should be 
regarded as toxic, and certainly are not safe for coloring food. Dispose of 
the mixture down the drain, with plenty of water.

1.  Bottle label, Paragon Multiple Stain for Frozen Sections, Paragon C & C 
Co., Inc., 190 Willow Avenue, Bronx NY 10454;  1981.
2.  Bray WE, Clinical Laboratory Methods, 6th ed., CV Mosby, St. Louis MO.  
(Cited by reference 1, this reference book is long out of publication, and 
editions I've looked at have no such formula.)
3.  Procedure written by Robert S. Richmond, MD, FCAP, August 1989.

Freida Carson noted in 1996:
The formula given by the Samurai pathologist is the one we use. This 
procedure was published by Martin JH, Lynn JA, and Nickey WM in the Am J. 
Clin Pathol 46:250, 1966.

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