Re: Astra blue technique

From:Sarah LaBonte <>

Here is a technique given to me more years ago than I care to remember....

Astral Blue Stain for Mast Cells
Deparafinize to water
30 minutes in 1% astral Blue solution
(1gm astral blue powder dissolved in 100 ml of 0.7 N HCl)
5 minutes in0.7 N HCl
wash with water rinse 2-3 times
few dips (2 quick) eosin
(200ml 1% aq. eosin Y, 30 ml 1% aq. Phlozine B, 1560 ml 95% etoh, 6 ml acetic acid)
dehydrate, clear and mount
Ref:  J. Clin. Path 34 (1981) 851-858 (uses safranin, buth they prefer eosin at Penn)
Results: Mast cells-blue
hope this helps.....Sarah

Sarah LaBonte, HT (ASCP)
Research Associate, Histology Lab
Texas A&M University
College of Veterinary Medicine
Dept. of Vet Anatomy & Public Health
College Station, TX  77843-4458
phone: (979) 845-3177
fax:  (979) 458-3499

>>> "Anthony f. Brandwood" <> 05/04/01 02:34AM >>>

--On 01 May 2001 10:37 -0500 Renee Escalona <> 

> Tony,
> I have never heard of the "Astra blue" technique  but our lab uses a
> Giemsa stain or a Toluidine Blue stain for the demonstration of mast
> cells with much success.  Hope this helps.
> Renee Escalona, BS, HTL(ASCP)
> Laboratory Supervisor
> TX Vet. Med. Diag. Lab.
> College Station, TX

Dear Renee,

Thank you for your reply.We do use Toluidine Blue routinely for mast cells, 
however, one of our Pathologists had found a paper using Asta blue to stain 
the mast cells and then use image analysis to automatically identify them. 
The paper did not give the method for the Astra blue, hence the question on 
the 'Histonet'
Once again many thanks.

Best Wishes,



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