An analysis of methods for permanently mounting ovules cleared in four-and-a-half type clearing fluids

Stain Technol. 1982 May;57(3):161-9. doi: 10.3109/10520298209066609.


Ovules cleared in benzyl benzoate-4 1/2 clearing fluid can be permanently mounted in Piccolyte or Permount by replacing the cleaning fluid with absolute ethanol, upgrading the ovules in mixtures of ethanol and xylene (3:1, 2:2, 1:3, and xylene), and mounting them in either mountant under the supported coverglass of a Raj slide. Optical saggittal sections through the ovules resemble microtome sections in that the protoplasts are slightly shrunken away from the cell walls. The artifact is common in permanently mounted sections; fixation and paraffin infiltration are usually cited as the causes--its appearance in the whole-mounted ovules is caused by xylene. Although miscible with the clearing fluid, Euparal is the least satisfactory of the standard mountants for permanent preparations of cleared ovules and is best used with an equal quantity of clearing fluid for semipermanent preparations. A large quantity of Euparal in the mountant produces pronounced shrinkage. A method for permanently mounting cleared ovules with the clearing image unaltered employs a mountant which contains the ingredients of Spurr low viscosity embedding medium. Vinylcyclohexene dioxide (10 drops) is combined with diglycidyl ether of polypropylglycol (6 drops) and nonenyl succinic anhydride (26 drops). Ovules treated for 24 hr in benzyl benzoate-4 1/2 clearing fluid are passed through a graded series of clearing fluid-epoxy medium mixtures (3:1, 2:2, 1:3, and pure epoxy medium) at intervals of 14 minutes. One drop of dimethylaminoethanol, the cure accelerator, is then added to the epoxy medium and the ovules are mounted and covered immediately on a Raj slide. The preparation is cured in an oven at 60 C for 24 hr and observed with phase contrast or Nomarski interference optics.

MeSH terms

  • Cytological Techniques
  • Seeds / anatomy & histology*
  • Staining and Labeling