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Microsc Res Tech. 1997 Mar 1;36(5):422-7.

Paraformaldehyde effect on ruthenium red and lysine preservation and staining of the staphylococcal glycocalyx.

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Department of Microbiology, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee 53226, USA.


The utility of lysine in glutaraldehyde-ruthenium red fixatives for the preservation and/or staining of the fibrous staphylococci glycocalyx was improved by inclusion of paraformaldehyde. Short, 20 min prefixation times for paraformaldehyde-glutaraldehyde fixatives containing lysine, with or without ruthenium red, were compared to an extended overnight fixation. Samples were often lost in fixatives that did not contain paraformaldehyde at extended fixation times hampering the effective use of these fixatives for clinical or environmental applications. Inclusion of paraformaldehyde in the fixation with lysine permitted longer fixation times as well as stabilized the staphylococcal glycocalyx. Thus, the technical usefulness of fixatives employing lysine was significantly improved.

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