Re: Biogenex Optimax User Question

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---------------------- Forwarded by Susannah G Winden/Surgery/mc/Duke on
01/27/2000 08:34 AM ---------------------------

Susannah G Winden
01/25/2000 09:31 AM

To:   Victor Tobias <>,

Subject:  Re: Biogenex Optimax User Question  (Document link not converted)


My lab does research, so anything goes.  I was originally set up for IHC, but
lately I've been getting special stains requests.
I have been running all of these protocols on the research program format on my
Optimax, which does not utilize the barcodes.  This is useful for protocols
where I want to use my own reagents, and when I only want to make up small
amounts of working reagents from my Biogenex Special Stains kit.  Not only does
this save reagents in the kit, but it keeps them fresh.  I try not to use their
working solutions longer than recommended, and I try to store them as directed.
Since this system is still very new to me and until I find otherwise, it is
better to be safe than sorry.

However, this does not mean that I don't have tricks up my sleeve.  I have
that if you need to use the reagent right away and you need to bring them to
room temp., then you can take their lids off (make sure you don't mix them
up or
they can contaminate another reagent if put on the wrong bottle) and put
them in
a 37 degree oven for about five minutes or so.  I have  done this out of
desperation only a couple of times, but nothing yet has gone wrong.  I have
ran protocols with half Biogenex reagents, and half of mine.  I've been getting
requests for a Verhoeff's-Masson's combined stain, so I made my own Verhoeff's
and used all of their Masson's reagents except the Weigerts.  The results were
just as good as hand staining.  I am still working on H&E protocols, however,
because I find that alcoholic reagents like Eosin don't stay concentrated
on the
slide, therefore not staining as intensely.  I may just break down and get
H&E kit, because their reagents are developed to stay put.

As for your question about the silver stain, my best advise to you is to mix it
fresh with every run.  If you don't have the research software on your Optimax
and have to use the barcodes, then you can pour out the reagent in the barcoded
silver stain container into something else, estimate the amount you will need
for each run ( overestimating a little just in case), and pour your working
solution into the bar code container.  I don't know what their directions are
for making a working silver solution, but they seem to use a lot of 1:1
dilutions with any mixing needed for the special stain reagents.

Well, sorry I've been so long-winded but I do have a lot to say on the subject.
I hope this has helped you out in some way.   If there's anything else you want
to discuss, that will be cool, because I would like to hear other experiences
with this as well.  Good luck!

Suzy Winden
Experimental Surgery Pathology Core Lab
Duke University Medical Center
Durham, NC

Victor Tobias <> on 01/24/2000 03:49:18 PM

 To:      winde002


 Subject: Re: Biogenex Optimax User Question

Hi Suzy,

I am in touch with the sales rep on a daily basis, but want some input from the

Are you doing routine special stains on yours? My questions have to do with the
longevity of the reagents. We did a fungal stain with fresh working silver,
great and in two days the same working reagent was staining weakly. Do you find
necessary to store everything exactly as recommended? If you want to do a run
thing in the morning, how long do you need to let the reagents warm up before
them or can they be heated up rapidly somehow? Are you using many of the
reagents or are you using your own?

Victor wrote:

> Dear Victor,
> I have been using Biogenex's Masson's Special Stains kit on my Optimax, and
> been trying out H&E and special stain protocols using my own reagents as
> I have only had my Optimax for a few months, so if I can't help you with your
> questions, I can send you to someone at Biogenex who can.
> Suzy Winden
> Experimental Surgery Pathology Core Lab
> Duke University
> Durham, NC
> Victor Tobias <> on 01/21/2000 01:56:54 PM
>  To:      "'"
>           <>
>  cc:
>  Subject: Biogenex Optimax User Question
> We currently have a demo unit for special stains. If there is anyone out
> there that is doing specials with it, I have some questions for you.
> Thanks
> Victor Tobias
> Histology Supervisor
> University of Washington Medical Center
> Seattle Wa.

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