RE: big honkin' samples

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From:"Kellar, Eric" <kellarec@MSX.UPMC.EDU> (by way of histonet)
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Before investing in a Jung Polycut E sliding microtome, I used an old Leitz
820 rotary microtome with an old quick release clamp. I was successful in
getting pretty nice paraffin whole mount sections on whole larynx and
prostate specimens. The trick is to get some paraffin support behind the big
honkin specimen (approx. 1.5" to 2" of solid paraffin), while still
achieving enough clearance between the blade and specimen. Also remember to
release trapped air bubbles during embedding, if not, they will cause the
specimen to vibrate and break away from the cassette at the microtome. It
usually took half a day to properly embed the specimen and then let it cool.
Old fashioned lead "L's" worked great as molds with mega-cassettes placed on

Eric C. Kellar
University of Pittsburgh Medical Center

> ----------
> From: 	Jeff Crews[]
> Sent: 	Friday, November 12, 1999 10:36 AM
> To:
> Subject: 	big honkin' samples
>      Does anyone have any experience with embedding and sectioning
>      large-cross-section tissues? We have some porcine vertebral samples
>      that measure about  2" x 1 1/2". I can get larger cassettes for
>      processing them and make some larger embedding molds, but how do you
>      suggest that we clamp them in the microtome? This is the first time
>      that we've had to do something this large, and I'd appreciate hearing
>      from others about it. Thanks again!
>                                                 jc

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