Histology

Equipment

 Leica tp1020 processor

1. Leica TP1020 Processor

The Leica TP1020 is an automatic tissue processor designed for laboratory applications. It is used for the fixation, dehydration and infiltration of histological tissue samples with fixatives, alcohol, solvents and paraffin wax. Times in all the reagents can be altered to allow correcting embedding of different types and sizes of tissue. This is all automated to give consistent results.

Leica EG1150-H Embedding station

2. Leica EG1150-H Embedding station

The embedding station allow us to take your molten wax impregnated tissue direct from the automatic processor to produce a typical “wax block” by placing your tissue in preformed cassettes or moulds, the addition of a cold plate on this embedding station also allows the manipulation of the specimen to give the correct cutting orientation.

Reichert Jung 140 Autocut Microtome

3. Reichert Jung 1140 Autocut Microtome

We have one automatic microtome; not only can this be used for standard paraffin embedded material but also for more specialised resin embedded tissue techniques. This microtome can also be used manually if preferred. Section thickness is adjustable from 3µm to 35µm. This microtome also comes with backlighting specimen magnification optics for quality control of sections. A complete range of specimen and knife holders are available.

Leica EG 1150-C Cold Plate

4. Leica EG 1150-C Cold Plate
The Leica EG1150-C cold plate compliments the EG 1150-H embedding station. Your tissue block is immediately taken from the embedding station and placed on the cold plate - this allows rapid and controlled cooling of the wax block, limiting possible crystallisation of the wax which impairs final sectioning. It can also be used to cool previously blocked out tissue prior to cutting to give better results.

 

a0 spencer no 820 rotary microtomes

AO Spencer No. 820 Rotary Microtomes
This microtome is a manual microtome which helps initial users to get a true feel for cutting sections and all the subtle variation of techniques to give you the perfect end result. Sections can be cut anywhere between ~5µm and 50µm depending on final requirements. We use disposable blades as standard and have several of these microtomes available

leica cm1510 cryostat

Leica CM1510 Cryostat
Thecryostat is essentially a microtome in a freezer.  In frozen sectioning tissue can be fixed or unfixed, tissue is rapidly frozen and mounted in the microtome of the cryostat. Sections are cut in a similar way to normal microtomy. The main advantage of frozen sectioning is speed, but that can be at the cost of the technical quality, and serial sectioning compared to paraffin histology. As well as speed other advantages are preservation of lipids and improved viability of some antigens masked by traditional paraffin histology.

Vibratome

Vibrotome
A Vibrotome produces sections of fixed or fresh animal or plant tissue but it uses neither paraffin embedding frozen sectioning techniques, instead the tissue is embedded in an agar or agarose gel,  it is also possible to cut non embedded tissue. A vibrating knife is used to cut sections. Advantages are speed and the removal of artefacts and destruction of enzyme activities often associated with other embedding procedures and freezing techniques. However Vibrotome produced sections tend to be thicker and only individual sections can be produced. The Vibratome’s automatic operation makes serial sectioning an easy task.

We also have a full range of equipment in this facility associated with various embedding techniques: - several section baths, hot plates, section boxes, slide drying ovens and all the general lab equipment, consumables and glassware etc one would expect. The laboratory also has a fume cupboard, fume hood, gas and vacuum supplies.