RE: Alcian Blue for ... [urban myths]

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From:"RUSS ALLISON" <> (by way of histonet)
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It is many years now since a dye supplier (and manufacturer of
some dyes) wrote to me and said alcian blue (8GX)  was about to
"disappear" and was I interested in buying any of his remaining
I ordered two pounds (it was sold in Imperial weights), which I
though could last the entire UK at least three years and my labs
until Hell ran out of fuel.
I've still got it (except a bit used for an exciting experiment ? how's
it going Pete?) and it is still on the market.
But it always was a dye with a funny history.

Remember Jack Scott spending the best of his scientific years
trying to establish its formula?  ICI (Imperial Chemical Industries)
refusing to give him any help? - they held the patent.  And just
when he cracked it, ICI announced they were to stop manufacture
and told him anyway? (confirmed that he got it right actually).

And what about Astrablau?

And John Kiernan's comments about (not) washing out with water
are relevant to those ladies looking to change the colour of their
sandals, skirts, etc.  (And the chaps if they really think it is their

Russ Allison,
Dental School

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