The Histochemical Journal

, Volume 14, Issue 3, pp 409–413 | Cite as

A simple and rapid method for osteoclast identification using a histochemical method for acid phosphatase

  • Yehya A. Mostafa
  • Ralph A. MeyerJr
  • Rocco Latorraca


A detailed description of a simple technique for acid phosphatase demonstration in osteoclast cells is presented. The method is short, relatively uninvolved and allows the use of undecalcified bone sections. All materials and chemicals used are commercially available. The sections were stained histochemically using naphthol AS-B1 phosphoric acid as a substrate and counter stained with Mayer's Haematoxylin. Sections prepared by this method showed good results and enable accurate measurement of osteoclast counts.


Phosphoric Acid Acid Phosphatase Rapid Method Haematoxylin Naphthol 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Evans, R. A., Dunstan, C. R. &Baylink, D. J. (1979) Histochemical identification of osteoclasts in undecalcified sections of human bone.Mineral Electrolyte Metabolism 2, 179–85.Google Scholar
  2. Göthlin, G. &Ericsson, J. L. E. (1976) The osteoclast: review of ultrastructure, origin and structure function relationship.Clin. Orthop. 120, 201–31.Google Scholar
  3. Horton, E. A., Kockery, N., Silence, D. &Rimoin, D. L. (1980) An embedding method for histochemical studies of undecalcified skeletal growth plate.Stain Technol. 55, 19–29.Google Scholar
  4. Humason, G. L. (1972)Animal Tissue Techniques. 3rd edn. San Francisco: Freeman.Google Scholar
  5. Janckila, A. J., Li, C. Y., Lam, K. W. &Yam, L. T. (1978) The cytochemistry of tartrate-resistant acid phosphatase. I. Technical considerations.Am. J. clin. Pathol. 70, 45–55.Google Scholar
  6. Johnstone, J. J. A. (1979) The routine sectioning of undecalcified bone for cytochemical studies.Histochem. J. 11, 359–65.Google Scholar
  7. Li, C. Y., Yam, L. T. &Sam, K. W. (1970) Acid phosphatase isoenzyme in human leukocytes in normal and pathologic conditions.J. Histochem. Cytochem. 18, 473–81.Google Scholar
  8. Walker, D. G. (1972) Enzymatic and electron microscopic analysis of isolated osteoclasts.Calcif. Tissue Res. 9, 296–309.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Chapman and Hall Ltd 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yehya A. Mostafa
    • 1
  • Ralph A. MeyerJr
    • 1
  • Rocco Latorraca
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Basic Sciences, School of DentistryMarquette UniversityMilwaukeeUSA
  2. 2.Trinity Memorial HospitalCudahyUSA

Personalised recommendations