[Histonet] more rigid paraffin

Monfils, Paul PMonfils <@t> Lifespan.org
Tue Sep 5 15:15:51 CDT 2006

The problem is, tissues shrink during processing, specifically during
dehydration. However, tissue has "memory", and on the water bath the tissue
section relaxes and stretches back to approximately its original dimensions.
The embedding medium has to stretch to accomodate the stretching of the
tissue. If the water bath is too warm, some tissues may overstretch, causing
separations within the tissue.  If it is too cool, the tissue may not resume
its original dimensions, and may have wrinkles in it.  An embedding medium
that doesn't stretch well would probably have the same effect as a water
bath that is too cool, preventing the tissue section from assuming its true
size and shape.

If your sections are overstretching, perhaps you could try setting your
water bath a couple of degrees cooler. Or, you might have to go a couple of
degrees warmer. Inconsistent stretching can be caused by either condition.
And/or you could try adding a drop of detergent to your water bath, to
lessen the effects of surface tension on the tissue sections.

Paul M.

> ----------
> From: 	histonet-bounces <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu on behalf of Patsy
> Ruegg
> Sent: 	Tuesday, September 5, 2006 12:48 PM
> To: 	histonet <@t> pathology.swmed.edu
> Subject: 	[Histonet] more rigid paraffin
> Does anyone know of a paraffin which will stretch less/distort less than
> most?  We are trying to digitally reconstruct tissue 3 dimensionally at
> the
> histology level by scanning tissue sections completely thru the sample and
> line them up one after the other but the paraffin sections stretch and
> distort so that one section does not match it's deeper counter part.  We
> thought if we had a stiffer medium this distortion from section to deeper
> section would be reduced?  We are thinking about using GMa instead
> paraffin
> to embed expecting less distortion but we also want to do IHC and that is
> problematic with GMA.  Any suggestions for this project would be
> appreciated.
> Thanks,
> Patsy Ruegg
> IHCtech
> 12635 Montview Blvd. Ste.215
> Aurora, Colorado 80045
> Phone: 720-859-4060
> Fax: 720-859-4110
> pruegg <@t> ihctech.net
> www.ihctech.net 
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