Böhmer's formula is the original alum hematoxylin solution for nuclear staining. It is included for educational and historical reasons as the solution has little use in modern histotechnology.
|Solution A||Var 1||Var 2||Function|
|Hematoxylin||3.5 g||8 g||Dye|
|100% ethanol||100 mL||100 mL||Solvent|
|Solution B||Var 1||Var 2||Function|
|Ammonium alum||0.3 g||0.3 g||Mordant|
|Distilled water||100 mL||100 mL||Solvent|
Var 1 is taken from the Microtomist's Formulary and Guide, and Var 2 from the Microtomist's Vade-Mecum. The difference in concentration of the hematoxylin may be due to converting an alcoholic logwood extract to grams of dye. In any case, the way it is used makes the differences irrelevant.
Originally solution A would have been made by soaking logwood chips in ethanol until a suitable concentration of dye was obtained. The solution would then have been allowed to ripen for a long time until it was distinctly deep brown, and filtered before it was used. In a modern variation, simply dissolve the dye in ethanol and leave to ripen, or add a small amount of sodium iodate.
The original called for a few drops of solution A to be added to a small quantity of solution B in a watch glass until the depth of colour was judged to be correct. For today's use, perhaps 5 mL solution A added to 45 mL solution B, more or less, would be satisfactory.
Gray, Peter. (1954)
The Microtomist's Formulary and Guide.
Originally published by:– The Blakiston Co.
Republished by:– Robert E. Krieger Publishing Co.
Bolles Lee, A.. Edited by Gatenby, J.B. and Beams, H.W., (1950)
The Microtomist's Vade-Mecum. 11 ed.,
Churchill, London, UK.