Re: flattening cartilage sections

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Alcohol works great with routine, bone and cartilage.  We always kept a
dish of alcoholic water by the waterbath while cutting.  Never really
measured how much was put in the dish but I can estimate about 10-15 ml of
95% alcohol:approx. 400 ml of distilled water in a 500 ml staining dish or
a dish that was similar.  Some of the technicians preferred lower wider
rubbermaid type dishes.  It was easier for spreading ribbons.  Just used a
dissecting needle or forceps to seperate section in the alcohol bath,
lifted the section out with a slide, and placed it in the waterbath.   It
was great for getting wrinkles out of tissue and aided in obtaining nice
flat sections.  Sections will twirl once placed in the waterbath, but I
believe this aids in getting the wrinkles out.

Using this method we also did not notice any difference in staining from
the slides that were floated in the alcohol bath and the slides that were

Rande Kline HT (ASCP)
Technical Services
EM Science

Gayle Callis <> on 11/04/98 04:21:32 PM

Subject:  flattening cartilage sections

I have tried the cold alcohol bath before warm waterbath, but use
10% ethanol instead of a higher concentration.  Changed after
I blew away a few sections.  Have also used a DMSO in 40C waterbath, up
to 5%, but it requires a glass insert of some type and no contact with
metal, good ventilation, no skin contact.  Nasty stuff but it worked

Gayle Callis

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