Re: Fontana-Masson stain kit

From:Geoff McAuliffe <mcauliff@UMDNJ.EDU>

Miriam Schroeder wrote:

> Beth:
> I made several posts to the Histonet recently with
> questions about Fontana-Masson staining and never did
> get ANY replies which I found quite unusual.
> Fortunately, I was able to get the stain to work
> without any advice.  (I was worried maybe I was doing
> something wrong - but once I got ahold of some control
> slides I was able to confirm that my experimental
> tissue simply was not positive for this stain, it was
> NOT a question of my technique.)  My posts were
> regarding the mechanism of the stain - I didn't
> understand the chemical mechanism behind the stain so
> didn't know what steps of the procedure I might want
> to try "tweaking".

It is nice to see people curious about the mechanism of staining!

> I purchased reagents from American Master*Tech
> Scientific, Lodi, CA, 800-860-4073,
>  I find their catalog a bit
> tricky to navigate at times, so I'll include page
> numbers from the current catalog to help you along:
> They sell a kit, catalog #KTFMA, page 83, $85.  It's
> actually a pretty small kit, you can also order the
> individual components by bulk & request the protocol
> from the kit, that's what I did.  The bulk reagents
> are also found of pg. 83:  Gold Chloride Solution, 1
> pint, #KC0712, $95; Nuclear Fast Red, #KC0722, 1 pint,
> $70; Silver Nitrate, #KC073B, 10 vials of powder, $65;
> 5% Sodium Thiosulfate, 1 pint, #KC0742, $39.

    I want to point out that you are paying a HUGE premium for the
conveninece of having someone else mix chemicals for you. A pint of 5%
sodium thiosulfate contains about 24 grams of the chemical, you can buy
500 grams for $32 (list price) from Fisher Scientific, enough to make
over 20 pints of a 5% solution. The pentahydrate form of sodium
thiosulfate is very stable and last forever on the shelf.

    Congratulations on your success with the stain!

Geoff McAuliffe, Ph.D.
Neuroscience and Cell Biology
Robert Wood Johnson Medical School
675 Hoes Lane, Piscataway, NJ 08854
voice: (732)-235-4583; fax: -4029

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