[Histonet] Re: Removing tape - clarified

Theresa (Teri) Johnson TJohnson <@t> gnf.org
Mon Feb 27 12:00:57 CST 2012

Greetings all,

My response was to the post sent by Merissa which states:

Dear All,

I am using clear packing tape on mma embedded rabbit femurs with implants.

The reasoning for the use of tape is that the implant crumbles when being cut without the tape.  I have switched to a new tape that partially comes off with xylene, but does not release from the section on the slide (held with haupts).  Does anyone have suggestions for removing the tape - xylene vs toluene vs acetone?  At this point, the slides have been in xylene overnight and have not been released from the slides and the other tape took 45mins to lift off.

Thank you so much,


I'm thinking I should have provided this with my email response. My apologies. For those who are still confused, here is my response to the above dilemma:

I'm venturing a few guesses here, and would welcome others to do the same. My guess is using acetone might dissolve/soften the plastic from the tape but not remove the adhesive from the top of the tissue section. In thinking about removing adhesive from surfaces where it is unwanted, you sometimes cannot use solvents without compromising the integrity of the surface. Peanut butter or WD40 works well for those types of issues. So I'm thinking maybe WD40 or maybe a soak in mineral oil? I'd probably try mineral oil first, since it's a paraffinic oil. Maybe even warm it?

In addition, Diane Sterchi has a JOH article which addresses this in large paraffin block sectioning. She tried different tapes and shows which ones worked better than others.

Happy Monday!

Teri Johnson, HT(ASCP)QIHC
GNF Histology Lab Manager
Genomics Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation

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