RE: ethyl or reagent alcohol?

From:"Locallo, Catherine"


Most hospitals get the exception for paying the tax so it is cheaper to
purchase the Ethanol that to buy reagent grade alcohol from the vendors.  I
have seen the reagent alcohol to cost three times what I pay for ethanol and
with the Medicare and Medicade cuts the hospitals need to save whereever
they can.

Cathy Locallo
Director Anatomic Pathology
Children's Memorial Hospital
Chicago, Il.  

> -----Original Message-----
> From:	Morken, Tim []
> Sent:	Friday, January 24, 2003 11:12 AM
> To:	'Histonet'
> Subject:	RE: ethyl or reagent alcohol?
> Fred, and all,
> Reagent alcohol bought by hisology labs is a blend of ethanol, methanol
> and
> isopropanol, and works fine as 100 percent "alcohol" (A catalog here has
> "reagent alcohol" as a blend of 90 percent absolute ethanol, 5% methanol,
> and 5%isopropanol). In my experience I have not seen any functional
> difference in general histology (processing, routine staining,
> deparaffinizing) using either "reagent" alcohol or anhydrous ethanol as
> 100
> percent "alcohol."
> The difference is that if you get 100 percent ethanol you have to pay
> federal tax (unless you get an expemption). The aldrich catalog shows 4L
> of
> ACS 200 proof ethanol to be twice the cost (with tax)of 4L of reagent
> alcohol.
> Tim Morken
> Atlanta
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Monson, Frederick C. []
> Sent: Friday, January 24, 2003 10:35 AM
> To: List-HistoPath (E-mail)
> Subject: FW: ethyl or reagent alcohol?
> Before I launch on this mini-diatribe, I want to make clear that Martin's
> question is quite legit.  However, I think it has been already misread,
> and
> since I think I have it right, here goes.
> OK, I don't know anything about the recycling methods used by the common
> recyclers used in histo labs, but before the question about "ethyl" and/or
> "reagent" alcohols goes any further, I want to see if I have missed
> something.
> Now I took organic chemistry in 1964, so I may be cloistered in a closet
> of
> ignorance, but....
> 	ethyl alcohol is ethanol is 1-hydroxy-ethane
> 	"reagent" is a term used to characterize either a mixture or the
> quality of a substance.  One would think that "reagent" would only be used
> to characterize unadulterated formulations, but I have seen it used in
> instances where the ethanol has been diluted and THEN denatured.
> 	"reagent ethanol" is almost always 95% ethanol + 5% water.
> 	Now to my revisions of Martin's question.
> 	If one recycles ethanol, does one get, as a result, "absolute
> ethanol" (200 Proof, 100%, USP) or does one get 95+or-% ethanol back?
> Does
> one use absolute ethanol for final dehydrations or does one use 95% for
> everything?
> 	If one is not recycling ethanol, would one choose absolute ethanol
> as a starting point for all dilutions or would one choose 95% ethanol (one
> of the "reagent" alcohols)?
> 	Finally I should like to respond to my interpretations as follows.
> 	The word "mouse" is irrelevant to this discussion - in my thinking.
> 	I always use absolute ethanol (USP) that I have purchased in PINT
> packages, because as soon as I open a container, the ethanol rapidly
> becomes
> less than absolute.  This has been true when I use it in any histology,
> any
> chemistry, any biochemistry, and any molecular biology, and any parties.
> 	I always use 95% ethanol ("reagent" alcohol) to fabricate other
> concentrations of ethanol.  I personally INSURE that none of the "reagent
> ethanol I purchase is denatured.  
> 	I have never recycled ethanol, because I have never operated in an
> environment in which that would be cost effective, so I defer to others in
> matters specific to those applications.
> Regards,
> Fred Monson
> Frederick C. Monson, PhD
> Center for Advanced Scientific Imaging
> Mail to Geology
> West Chester University of Pennsylvania
> Schmucker II Science Center, Room SS024
> South Church Street and Rosedale Avenue
> West Chester, PA, 19383
> Phone:  610-738-0437
> eMail:
> An FEI (Quanta 400 and Technai 12), 
> Oxford INCA Energy 400, and 
> Olympus FV-300 Shop.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Martin, Ronald []
> Sent: Friday, January 24, 2003 8:15 AM
> To:
> Subject: ethyl or reagent alcohol?
> Histonetters,
> I have a question for those of you involved in research with mouse tissue.
> Which type of alcohol do you prefer for your tissue processing, ethyl
> alcohol or reagent alcohol?
> Thanks,
> Ron Martin, B.Sc.,  HTL (ASCP)HT
> Research Associate

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