Staining Methods for Normal and Regenerative Myelin in the Nervous System
Histochemical techniques enable the specific identification of myelin by light microscopy. Here we describe three histochemical methods for the staining of myelin suitable for formalin-fixed and paraffin-embedded materials. The first method is conventional luxol fast blue (LFB) method which stains myelin in blue and Nissl bodies and mast cells in purple. The second method is a LBF-based method called MCOLL, which specifically stains the myelin as well the collagen fibers and cells, giving an integrated overview of the histology and myelin content of the tissue. Finally, we describe the osmium tetroxide method, which consist in the osmication of previously fixed tissues. Osmication is performed prior the embedding of tissues in paraffin giving a permanent positive reaction for myelin as well as other lipids present in the tissue.
Key wordsMyelin sheath Luxol fast blue Picrosirius staining Osmium tetroxide method Collagen staining MCOLL method Paraffin embedding
The methods described in this chapter were supported by the Spanish “Plan Nacional de Investigación Científica, Desarrollo e Innovación Tecnológica”, from the National Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness (Instituto de Salud Carlos III), Grant No FIS PI14-1343 and cofinanced by “Fondo Europeo de Desarrollo Regional” (FEDER), European Union.
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