Simplification of the modified Gallyas method

Neuropathology. 2015 Feb;35(1):10-5. doi: 10.1111/neup.12144. Epub 2014 Sep 1.


The Gallyas method is a silver impregnation technique that is essential in the field of neuropathology because of its high sensitivity for the detection of argentophilic inclusion bodies in the central nervous system. In Japan, the Gallyas method has improved and is widely used as the "modified Gallyas method". However, this method is not popularly used in general pathology laboratories because of the need for special reagents, several staining processes, and skilled techniques. The objective of the current study was to provide a simplified Gallyas method. We omitted the lanthanum nitrate step from the staining process and verified the adequacy in comparison with the original method as well as immunohistochemistry, using specimens from patients of Alzheimer's disease, argyrophilic grain disease, multiple system atrophy, Pick's disease, and Lewy body disease. The simplified method provided good staining to all the structures in archival tissues, compared with the modified Gallyas method in a significantly shorter staining time. The lanthanum nitrate step can be omitted from the modified Gallyas method, resulting in reduction in the number of reagents required and shortening of the staining time.

Keywords: argyrophilic grains; glial cytoplasmic inclusion; lanthanum nitrate hexahydrate; neurofibrillary tangles; simplification technique.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Alzheimer Disease / pathology
  • Humans
  • Lewy Body Disease / pathology
  • Multiple System Atrophy / pathology
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases / pathology*
  • Pick Disease of the Brain / pathology
  • Silver Staining / methods*