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sealing microscope slides - (Oct/05/2011 )

Does anybody have any tips for sealing immunostained slides with nail varnish???
I came to my slides this morning to look at them and some of the mountant had leaked out of some of the slides and therefore i needed to re-seal them with nail varnish :-(

Also does anyone have any tips for removing mountant from coverslips??? as when i clean the counterslip it becomes blurry and therefore hard to see my tissue.



It sounds like you are using al ittle too much mounting fluid. If you are going to seal the coverslips with nail polish, then you only need enough mounting fluid to cover the center viewable area of the slide. The perfect amount should actually almost reach the edge of the coverslip, but not quite (i.e. with air all around blob of mounting fluid).

As for cleaning your coverslip, you have to be careful because most solvents that will clean off the mounting fluid can also disolve the nail polish that is sealing your slide. I have had different experiences using a dilute acetone, or methanol/ethanol, but no matter what, you should always use a Cotton swab or nub of Kimwipe and dip just a litle bit in the solvent and gently wipe only the center area of the coverslip.

Best of Luck.


I use commercial glass cleaning products (windex) which contain methanol with some ammonia and detergents as the active ingredients. As Allynspear said, you need to be quite gentle with the coverslips.

I like to use glycergel for mounting - it is solid at room temp and there is no need to wait for curing, which lowers the risk of drying out and you don't need to seal the edges if you just want a quick look at the slides.