Re: Xylene Substitute

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From:"Jeff Silverman" <>
To:"Jorge Villalona" <>
Date:Wed, 19 May 1999 19:50:50 -0400
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I use any of the d-limonene products: Americlear from Allegience Health
care, Hemo De from Fisher, or Clearene from Surgipath. D- limonene is a
food grade oil, a terpene extracted from the peels of oranges and
grapefruits. It is non toxic but it has a strong orange smell- many people
like it and many others hate it. Some people have an allergic sensitivity
reaction to it but no one in my lab has been bothered in ten years. Not
only is it non-toxic and "generally regarded as safe" by OSHA, d-limonene
has anticancer activity and is being fed to human cancer patients in
clinical trials. We can dump it down the sink and use it in all staining
stations of paraffin and Pap smears. We also use it to purge the tissue
processor- one change lasts me ten purges (two weeks) but  the purge
solution can go in the garbage not down the sink because it is too
saturated with paraffin. I still use xylene  in my VIP for processing
because d-limonene is not as good, some blocks are greasy. But this exposes
us to xylene only every five or six weeks when we change the processor.
D-limonene has a high vapor pressure and coverslipping multiple slides is
easy, no "corn flake nuclei" from rapid evaporation. Also, you need to keep
a jar of xylene at the coverslipping  bench to clean smeared slides since
the -d-limonene does not dissolve the Cytoseal medium.  I heartily endorse
it but watch out for allergies. E mail if you need more info. 
Jeff Silverman 
Southampton Hospital

> From: Jorge Villalona <>
> To:
> Subject: Xylene Substitute
> Date: Wednesday, May 19, 1999 7:23 PM
> Hi, everyone in the field of histotechnology.
> Our histology lab is looking for a xylene substitute that is easy to
> dispose of, great for diparaffinization, dihydration, coverslipping and
> most important; nonhazardous to our health. 
> If anyone is using a xylene substitute, please give us your input.
> We greatly appreciate your commends and recomendation.
> Thanks.
> Jorge Villalona; HT (ASCP)

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