[Histonet] postmortem tissue collection

Philip Oshel peoshel <@t> wisc.edu
Wed Jul 20 08:33:54 CDT 2005

Interesting question. My bet is tendon. Chrondrocytes in dense 
cartilage would seem to be likely, but experience here has shown that 
they have to be freeze-fixed by high-pressure freezing to avoid cell 
death artifacts. Any other way is too slow.
Or ... dormant stem cells?

>Interestingly I was reading about tissue death after death (so as to
>speak) on a Web Site dealing with Death (I'm strange like that); I was
>interested in rigor. I hadn't realised that some tissue deep within the
>cadaver can survive for many hours after death. I suppose it's those
>tissues that require little or no oxygen to survive; brain dies very
>rapidly. If I could remember the Site then I'd tell you but a search in
>Google under rigor may help. Wonder which bit of you dies last? Same in
>men and women?
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Y. Wang [mailto:ynwang <@t> u.washington.edu]
>Sent: 20 July 2005 00:20
>To: Histonet <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu
>Subject: [Histonet] postmortem tissue collection
>Dear histonetters,
>I have a question regarding collection of human tissue. A colleague
>like to collect human tissue (skin and underlying adipose tissue) for
>mechanical testing, histological analysis (cellular and structural
>evaluation), IHC and protein analysis (extracellular matrix structure
>concentrations). They asked what would be a fair cut off time for tissue
>collection so that the effects of decay would not be a factor. Currently
>they have given the tissue bank a time of 12 hours postmortem (I'm not
>very sure how the body is stored during this time or how this is
>I've read that human decomposition starts approx. 4 min after death and
>autolysis is quicker in tissues with high enzyme and water content.
>However, in terms of the skin and underlying adipose tissue I didn't
>if there was an accepted 'cut off time' postmortem after which tissue
>is considered far from representative of 'live' tissue and not worth
>Can anyone give some insight? Any information or references would be
>greatly appreciated.
>Thank you
>Senior Fellow
>Department of Bioengineering
>University of Washington
>Box 357962
>Seattle, WA 98195
>Tel.: (206)-221-5873
>Fax.: (206)-221-5874
>Histonet mailing list
>Histonet <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu
>Histonet mailing list
>Histonet <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu

Philip Oshel
Supervisor, BBPIC microscopy facility
Department of Animal Sciences
University of Wisconsin
1675 Observatory Drive
Madison,  WI  53706
voice: (608) 263-4162
fax: (608) 262-5157 (dept. fax)

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