The Histochemical Journal

, Volume 20, Issue 6–7, pp 329–334 | Cite as

Understanding microwave-stimulated Romanowsky-Giemsa staining of plastic embedded bone marrow

  • Richard W. Horobin
  • M. E. Boon


Bone marrow smears were made and fixed in methanol or formaldehyde. Marrow sections of various thicknesses were also prepared from formaldehyde fixed marrows embedded in paraffin or plastic (glycol methacrylate). The different smears and sections were then stained by a Romanowsky-Giemsa procedure. Some specimens were stained using a standard microwave-stimulated method previously used diagnostically. The effects of technical variations were studied, including degree of microwave irradiation and the staining time. Comparisons of the resulting staining outcomes showed that microwave stimulated Romanowsky-Giemsa staining of plastic sections is a rate controlled process. Unusual aspects of the staining pattern of plastic sections (namely the purple basophilic cytoplasms and nucleoli, and blue chromatin) are due to microwave stimulation and formaldehyde fixation respectively.


Formaldehyde Bone Marrow Glycol Methacrylate Microwave Irradiation 
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Copyright information

© Chapman and Hall Ltd 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Richard W. Horobin
    • 1
  • M. E. Boon
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Molecular and Cell BiologyThe University of ConnecticutStorrsUSA
  2. 2.Leiden Cytology and Pathology LaboratoryLeidenThe Netherlands

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