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Biotech Histochem. 2009 Feb;84(1):11-5. doi: 10.1080/10520290802630415.

Stain and dye stability over a 30-year period: a comparison of certified dye powders by the Biological Stain Commission.

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Biological Stain Commission, Department of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine, University of Rochester Medical Center, Rochester, New York 14642-0001, USA.


The Biological Stain Commission (BSC) Assay Laboratory has received numerous inquiries during the past several years regarding the long-term stability of stain and dye powders, particularly since packaging requirements call for expiration dates on reagents. We have conducted a study to examine the long-term stability of selected dye powders. We used the standard procedures of the BSC for testing biological stains for certification to give an indication of the long-term chemical stability as well as staining performance of the dye powders. An earlier study by Emmel and Stotz examined the stability of various dye powders after a five-year storage period. The present study is a follow-up project covering the same dyes after storage for 30 years. The dye samples chosen for the study are the same samples used in the five-year storage period study and give comparative results for all three time periods. The results of this study affirm the generally held speculation that dye powders are stable for many years and thus have a substantial shelf-life.

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