Re: need help....

From:Vinnie Della Speranza <>

I'm skeptical that formalin fixed rbc will lyse. unfixed red cells, as in the purple top tubes you mentioned, are lysed using an acetic acid solution which causes the cells to swell and burst. This swelling is the result of the drawing of water into the cell. whether this same result would occur with fixed rbc membranes is questionable but someone else may have done this successfully.


Vinnie Della Speranza
Manager for Anatomic Pathology Services
Medical University of South Carolina
165 Ashley Avenue
Suite 309
Charleston, SC  29425
ph:  (843) 792-6353
fax: (843) 792-8974

>>> Colleen Forster <> 05/10/01 02:08PM >>>
It was suggested that I might lyse the RBCS in the formalin specimen.
How would I do this? I cannot remember what
and how much to add to the solution without damaging other cells??/

Also, Lynn, purple top tubes contain EDTA so blood will not coagulate.
However, I doubt there is a  fixative as most blood
work is done stat and tubes tossed daily. that is why I wondered if you
could still fix and get anything. Any comments?????

As Always, your help is APPRECIATED !!!!

Colleen Forster
U of MN, Dept. of Neurology 

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