[Histonet] Silly Question?

Tony Henwood AnthonyH <@t> chw.edu.au
Thu Dec 11 16:18:05 CST 2008

Where is the evidence - or is this another mythical beast some of us

I don't believe it.


Tony Henwood JP, MSc, BAppSc, GradDipSysAnalys, CT(ASC)
Laboratory Manager & Senior Scientist
Tel: 612 9845 3306
Fax: 612 9845 3318
the children's hospital at westmead 
Cnr Hawkesbury Road and Hainsworth Street, Westmead 
Locked Bag 4001, Westmead NSW 2145, AUSTRALIA 

-----Original Message-----
From: histonet-bounces <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu
[mailto:histonet-bounces <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu] On Behalf Of Linda M
Sent: Friday, 12 December 2008 4:11 AM
To: Pat Flannery
Cc: histonet <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu
Subject: Re: [Histonet] Silly Question?

Hi Pat,
Paraformaldehyde does not contain any additives and is considered more 
"pure" than formaldehyde which often contains methanol which in some 
cases is undesirable depending on the type of  assay being conducted.


Pat Flannery wrote:

> Please humor me on this if it's obvious (to everyone but me):  why do
> we use paraformaldehyde (which is so inconvenient to make up) rather  
> than buffered formalin or just diluted formaldehyde itself?
> It seems that around here, some folks prefer paraformaldehyde (either
> 2% or 4%) and others use formalin, while some others stick to diluted

> formaldehyde (I see all 4 on labels for specimens submitted for  
> histology).  Is it mostly a matter of personal preference or where 
> you  were trained (i.e. force of habit) or is there a valid reason to 
> use  each solution (basically the same chemical once in solution, 
> merely  buffered or not)?  The only answer I've gotten when I've asked

> is,  "That's what we always use."
> Thanks.
> -Pat Flannery (not a "real" histologist - I just play one in the lab)
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