Re: Non-formalin based fixatives

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From:Shelley Sheridan <>
To:Andrea Perez <>, HistoNet Server <>
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<P>Hi Andrea,</P> <P>I work in a neuropathology laboratory where we process and stain human and animal brain tissue.  We use Formalin(NBF) fixation as well as an Ethanol(EtOH) fixation.  The EtOH fixative is 70% Ethanol with 150mM NaCl.</P> <P>The EtOH fixative has many pros as well as cons.  The main reason we use this fixative is because we get better results immunohistochemsitry.  Rarely is there any treatment necessary, but if there is a need for antigen retreival very few work.  You don't have to worry about fumes like you do with NBF, but it does take longer to fix.  We usually leave them overnight in fixative and process the next afternoon.  Many think that the morphology is not as good as NBF and many of our special stains require post-fixation in NBF prior to staining.</P> <P>We use the same dehydration and fixation schedual as our formalin fixed tissue and sometimes we process them together.</P> <P>Some pathologists in the lab love using EtOH fixation while others hate it.  You will just have to see if it solves your problem.  I hope that this is helpful.  If you require any other information please let me know.</P> <P> </P><BR><BR>Shelley K. Sheridan<br>Research Specialist<br>Center for Neurodegenerative Disease Research<br>University of Pennsylvania Medical School<br>Philadelphia, PA 19104<br>Phone:(215)614-0051<p><br><hr size=1><b>Do You Yahoo!?</b><br> Talk to your friends online with <a href="">Yahoo! Messenger</a>.
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