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Electron Microscopy Sciences

Technical Data Sheets

Van Gieson's Solution

EMS Catalog #26046

Van Gieson's Method for Collagen Fibers 




Paraffin @ 6 microns or Celloidin


  1. Deparaffinize and hydrate to distilled water
  2. Weigert's Working Hematoxylin* for 10 minutes.
  3. Wash in distilled water.
  4. Stain 1-3 minutes in Van Gieson's Solution (#26046-05)
  5. Dehydrate in 95% alcohol, absolute alcohol, two changes each. Clear in two changes xylene.
  6. Mount with Permount (#17986-01) or equivalents.

*Weigert's Working Solution is prepared by mixing equal parts of Weigert's Iron Hematoxylin A (EMS Cat #26044-05) and Weigert's Iron Hematoxylin B (EMS Cat. #26044-15)

Staining Results:

Collagen: Red

Smooth and striated muscle: Yellowish to Brownish

Cornified epthelium: Yellow

Hyalin: Yellow

Nuclei: Blue to Black


Clark, G., (ed.) Staining Procedures 3 rd Ed., Williams & Wilkins Co. Baltimore, c. 1973, p.50

Luna, L., (ed.) AFIP Manual of Histological Staining Methods, 3 rd Ed., New York . McGraw Hill Publication, c. 1968, p. 76.

Van Gieson, I. , New York Med. J., 50:57-60, 1889.

Mallory, F.B., Pathological Technique, W.B. Saunders Co., Philadelphia 1938.

Verhoeff's Elastic Tissue Stain 


10% Formalin or Zenker's Stock Solution (EMS Cat. #64123)


Paraffin @ 6 microns.

Staining Procedure:

  1. Deparaffinize and hydrate to distilled water.
  2. Place in staining solution for 15 minutes. Staining solution should be prepared fresh.
    Combine: 25 ml Iron solution.
    10 ml Potassium Iodide, 3%, aqueous.
    3.5 ml Alcoholic Hematoxylin, 10%.
    Use once and discard.
  3. Wash in tap water. Differentiate in Iron Solution, diluted 1-4 with distilled water
  4. Counter stain with Van Gieson's Solution, 3 - 5 minutes.
  5. Dehydrate, clear and mount.


Elastic Fibers: Intensely blue-black

Nuclei: Blue to black

Collagen: Red

Smooth and Striated Muscle: Brownish


Clark, G., Ed: Staining Procedures. 3 rd ed., Baltimore : William and Wilkens Co. c. 1972, p. 61

AFIP Manual of Histologic Staining Techniques. 3 rd ed., Ed. G.. Luna: New York : McGraw-Hill Publications, C. 1968, p. 76

Online Ordering

Van Gieson's Solution, Zenker's Stock Solution, and Weigert's Iron Hematoxylin are available online from the EMS Catalog. For ordering or product information, click here.