RE: [Histonet] Purple Haze.....
If this artefact is what I think you are talking about and that is a general
non-descript blue haze in the nuclei where chromatin detail is non-existent,
we in the UK have also experienced much the same problem.
Some years ago this problem lead to a national study being done through the
auspices of our National External Quality Control organisation (NEQAS).
If I remember correctly (and I'm sure someone over here will correct me if
I'm wrong) no firm conclusions were made as to what causes this artefact (in
the UK we often call this "blue blob syndrome")
Basically the nuclear meltdown artefact, to give it another name, was
principally found in endoscopic biopsies, usually of the GI tract, but was
occasionally seen in other tissue as well.
I personally think it's a multi-factorial phenomenon and has something to do
with how the biopsy is taken and the length of time it takes for the biopsy
to reach fixative from the endoscope. Coupled together with other as yet
unknown factors, it produces the said artefact. That is why it is an
I do seem to recall now that I think a bit, that there was some link
postulated with vacuum processing as well, but I don't think it was proven
and as I said earlier, this is an intermittent phenomenon so I don't think
that's the answer either.
We'll probably never know.
[mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]On Behalf Of Therersa
Sent: 08 October 2003 18:50
To: KMMerril@LancasterGeneral.org; email@example.com
Subject: [Histonet] Purple Haze.....
Thanks for naming the amorphous blight that has been plaguing us
lately. This "Jimi Hendrix" artifact has been running 'round our brains
for the past few weeks. We have 1-started filtering the hematoxylin
each morning, 2-alternated between Sta-on, gelatin, and naked
waterbaths, 3-scrubbed the entire staining system, 4-decreased time in
microwave, ovens, for drying slides; and yet, we still find this on some
biopsies. Not always all the biopsies in a batch, this led us to ask GI
about collection procedures, and possible air-drying, they insist it's
not them. We've checked pH on water, accurately calibrated the bluing
and acid/water washes (we stain regressively), and just about run out of
ideas. I'm beginning to suspect the hematoxylin is leaving a
precipitate, or maybe the microtomy is inconsistent and ruining cell
integrity, or .... maybe it's terrorism! Any ideas out there?
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