Demineralized murine skeletal histology

Methods Mol Biol. 2014:1130:165-183. doi: 10.1007/978-1-62703-989-5_12.


Cartilage and bone are specialized skeletal tissues composed of unique extracellular matrices. Bone, in particular, has a highly calcified or mineralized matrix that makes microtomy and standard histological studies very challenging. Therefore, methods to appropriately fix and decalcify mineralized skeletal tissues have been developed to allow for paraffin processing and standard microtomy. In this chapter, we illustrate methods for tissue grossing, fixation, decalcification, paraffin processing, embedding, sectioning, and routine histological staining of demineralized murine skeletal tissues. We also discuss methods for decalcified frozen sectioning of skeletal tissues with and without the use of a tape-transfer system.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bone and Bones / cytology*
  • Bone and Bones / metabolism
  • Decalcification Technique
  • Frozen Sections
  • Histocytological Preparation Techniques*
  • Mice
  • Microtomy
  • Paraffin Embedding
  • Staining and Labeling