- H&E stain
H&E stain, HE stain or hematoxylin and eosin stain, is a popular
stainingmethod in histology. It is the most widely used stain in medical diagnosis; for example when a pathologistlooks at a biopsyof a suspected cancer, the histological sectionis likely to be stained with H&E and termed "H&E section", "H+E section", or "HE section".
The staining method involves application of the basic dye
hematoxylin, which colors basophilicstructures with blue-purple hue, and alcohol-based acidic eosin Y, which colors eosinophilicstructures bright pink.
The basophilic structures are usually the ones containing
nucleic acids, such as the ribosomes and the chromatin-rich cell nucleus, and the cytoplasmatic regions rich in RNA.
The eosinophilic structures are generally composed of intracellular or extracellular
protein. The Lewy bodies and Mallory bodies are examples of eosinophilic structures. Most of the cytoplasmis eosinophilic. Red blood cells are stained intensely red.
The structures do not have to be acidic or basic to be called basophilic and eosinophilic. The terminology is based on the affinity to the dyes.
Other colors, e.g. yellow and brown, can be present in the sample; they are caused by intrinsic pigments, e.g.
Some structures do not stain well.
Basal laminae need to be stained by PAS stainor some silver stains, if they have to be well visible. Reticular fibers also require silver stain. Hydrophobic structures also tend to remain clear; these are usually rich in fats, eg. adipocytes, myelinaround neuron axons, and Golgi apparatusmembranes.
Papanicolaou stain, other popular staining technique
Wright's stain, used for cerebrospinal fluid and suspected lymphomas
Van Gieson's stain
* [http://www.sigmaaldrich.com/img/assets/7361/Primer-H&Emay04.pdf SIGMA-ALDRICH H&H Informational Primer]
* [http://ccm.ucdavis.edu/bcancercd/52/prcl_HandE.html Routine Mayer's Hematoxylin and Eosin Stain (H&E)]
* [http://www.ihcworld.com/_protocols/special_stains/h&e_ellis.htm Hematoxylin & Eosin (H&E) Staining Protocol]
* [http://www.bcm.edu/rosenlab/protocols/HEstaining.pdf Rosen Lab, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Baylor College of Medicine) Step by step protocol]
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