JBM  Vol.5 No.10 , October 2017
Comparative Investigation of Alternative Negative Staining Reagents in Bacterial Morphological Study
Abstract: Negative staining is an effective method that can be used for electron microscopic study to observe fine structural morphology without destruction of bacterial structure. Although uranium acetate is used worldwide as a general dyeing solution, it is extremely difficult to use it by a new purchase at a research institution because it falls under the nuclear regulation substance in Japan. Therefore, we examined alternative reagents for negative staining that could replace uranium acetate through bacterial observation with an electron microscope. Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Staphylococcus aureus, and Streptococcus pyogenes were examined by four stain reagents (phosphotungstic acid (PTA), EMstainer, TI blue, and uranium acetate). Pre cultured bacteria were stained with each stain reagents on a copper grid, washed with PBS, and observed with a transmission electron microscope. In the comparison between bacterial structures, the cell wall structure and bacterial flagella could be observed well in the order of PTA, EMstainer, and uranium acetate. With TI blue staining, flagella could be observed very poorly. In comparison between bacteria, gram negative bacteria such as Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, could be observed well as compared with gram positive cocci such as Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus pyogenes. The uranium acetate looked very coarse in background particles. Since crystals tend to precipitate, TI blue also required filtering, and electron beams were absorbed by the agglomerated crystals, and the frequency of electronic burning occurred high frequency. In this study, there was clear difference in the observation conditions depending on the type of bacteria and the kind of the staining reagents. Especially, it was confirmed that good negative staining features of Pseudomonas aeruginosa by electron microscope were obtained by PTA and EMstainer staining. These alternative reagents are considered to be a candidate for a negative staining.
Cite this paper: Minami, M. and Takase, H. (2017) Comparative Investigation of Alternative Negative Staining Reagents in Bacterial Morphological Study. Journal of Biosciences and Medicines, 5, 17-24. doi: 10.4236/jbm.2017.510002.

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