[Histonet] Safety advice for non-toxic clearing agents

Rittman, Barry R Barry.R.Rittman <@t> uth.tmc.edu
Wed Aug 15 06:44:56 CDT 2007

I personally treat ALL reagents as potentially harmful.
The term "non toxic" is greatly misused. I feel that it should state "non toxic as far as has been determined".
There are numerous instances in the literature regarding agents that originally were regarded as "safe" but later proved to be toxic especially after long term exposure, even if individual exposure times were short. 
A factor that is often not considered is that individuals  may vary considerably in their responses to chemicals.
Unfortunately while many agencies try their best to determine "acceptable" exposure levels, many of the studies are carried out on animals and the results from these studies cannot always be extrapolated to humans.
Can you persuade your administrator to get you a vented chamber with appropriate filters that you can store most of the time and then bring out for the times you need it? 


From: histonet-bounces <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu on behalf of Martin S.
Sent: Wed 8/15/2007 5:59 AM
To: histonet <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu
Subject: [Histonet] Safety advice for non-toxic clearing agents

Hi All,

I have recently tried Methyl (or should that be Ethyl!!) Green
counterstain with DAB and find that it gives much better contrast than
my haematoxylin.  I only do frozen sections and I have everything set up
so that I can use an aqueous mountant. For the Methyl Green (Vector) I
need to dehydrate and clear before permanent mounting. The problem is I
do not have easy access to a fume cabinet. I have Histoclear from RA
Lamb and Vecta Permanent Mountant both of which are classed as non-toxic
so I'm presuming I can use these on the bench. I only need to do this
now and again so I wouldn't have the staining baths permanently on the
Just wanted to get a bit of feedback from you wise histonetters about
wether or not this sounds 'safe'.

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