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Lipid staining for the electron microscope: a new method


, : Lipid staining for the electron microscope: a new method. Journal of Cell Science 19(3): 425-437

Tissues fixed in osmium tetroxide or in combined osmium and glutaraldehyde (Hinde), embedded in Spurr's medium, cut at 0.5-l .mu.m and mounted in Farrant's gum medium containing ethyl gallate, show good staining of lipid-containing structures (droplets of triglyceride, membranes, mitochondria, etc.) in the light microscope. Such preparations show moderate contrast in the electron microscope without further staining. But a specific increase in contrast in lipid-rich structures is obtained by partition of the tissues, before embedding, in 70% ethanol saturated with the monoterpene hydrocarbon myrcene, with or without the addition of 0.1% ethyl gallate, followed by osmium tetroxide. This method will visualize both saturated and unsaturated lipids including waxes.

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PMID: 54360


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