Romanowsky stain


Romanowsky stain

Romanowsky staining was a prototypical staining technique that was the forerunner of several distinct but similar methods, including Giemsa, Jenner, Wright, and Leishman stains, which are used to differentiate cells in pathologic specimens.

Ehrlich had used mixtures of acidic and basic dyes for this purpose in 1879: in 1891 Romanowsky and Malakowsky independently developed a technique using a mixture of Eosin Y and oxidated Methylene Blue that was also useful for this purpose. Because the aqueous dye solutions were unstable, methanol was introduced as a solvent, and Leishman (in 1901) and Wright (in 1902) advocated use of methanol as a fixative prior to staining. Giemsa in 1902 improved this technique by standardizing the dye solutions and adding glycerol to increase solubility and stability.

The oxidation of Methylene Blue in aqueous solution using heat and alkali produces a mixture of Azure A, Azure B, Methylene Violet and Methylene Blue. Eosin Y is then added to produce a "neutral" dye. The precipitate is then dissolved in a mixture of methanol and glycerol to form a stock solution: this is diluted with water or an aqueous buffer to form a working solution that is used in the preparation of pathology specimens.

ee also

*Staining (biology)


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  • Romanowsky stain — Ro·ma·now·sky stain or Ro·ma·now·sky s stain also Ro·ma·nov·sky stain or Ro·ma·nov·sky s stain .rō mə nȯf skē(z) n a stain made from water soluble eosin, methylene blue, and absolute methanol and used in parasitology Romanowsky Dimitri… …   Medical dictionary

  • romanowsky stain — |rōmə|nȯfskē noun Usage: usually capitalized R Etymology: after Dimitri L. Romanowsky died 1921 Russ. physician : a stain made from water soluble eosin, methylene blue, and absolute methanol and used in parasitology …   Useful english dictionary

  • stain — 1. To discolor. 2. To color; to dye. 3. A discoloration. 4. A dye used in histologic and bacteriologic technique. 5. A procedure in which a dye or combination of dyes and reagents is used to color the constituents of cells and tissues. For… …   Medical dictionary

  • Romanowsky (Romanovsky) stain (method) — Ro·ma·now·sky (Ro·ma·nov·sky) stain (method) (ro″mə nouґske) (ro″mə nofґske) [Dimitri Leonidovich Romanowsky (or Romanovsky), Russian physician, 1861–1921] see Stains and Staining Methods, under stain …   Medical dictionary

  • Romanowsky (Romanovsky) stain — the prototype of the many eosin–polychrome methylene blue stains for blood smears and malarial parasites, including Giemsa stain, Leishman stain, and Wright stain …   Medical dictionary

  • Romanowsky — Dimitri L., Russian physician, 1861–1921. See R. blood stain …   Medical dictionary

  • Romanowsky (Romanovsky) method — see Stains and Staining Methods, under stain …   Medical dictionary

  • Wright's stain — is a histologic stain that facilitates the differentiation of blood cell types. It is used primarily to stain peripheral blood smears and bone marrow aspirates which are examined under a light microscope. In cytogenetics it is used to stain… …   Wikipedia

  • Leishman stain — Leishman s stain, also Leishman stain, is used in microscopy for staining blood smears. It provides excellent stain quality. It is generally used to differentiate and identify leucocytes, malaria parasites, and trypanosomas. It is based on a… …   Wikipedia

  • Field's stain — is a histological method for staining of blood smears. It is used for staining thin blood films in order to discover malarial parasites. Field s stain is a version of a Romanowsky stain, used for rapid processing of the specimens.Field s stain… …   Wikipedia