Carnoy's solution

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Carnoy's solution is a fixative composed of 60% ethanol, 30% chloroform and 10% glacial acetic acid.[1][2]


Some of the uses of Carnoy's solution are:

  • Enhancing lymph node detection during dissection of cadavers.[3]
  • Immunohistochemical fixation and detection of NMDA receptors within the murine hippocampus.[4]
  • Applied directly following enucleation for the treatment of keratocystic odontogenic tumors.[5][6][7]
  • Direct application following enucleation (Cuba) for certain kinds of unicystic ameloblastomas.[8] This appears to decrease the likelihood of recurrence over enucleation alone.[9] Protein coagulation is thought to limit uptake of these toxic materials by surrounding tissues, however it is this fact that limits its usefulness as a treatment agent in general.[10]
  • As a fixative for pap smear samples.[11]
  • As a fixative agent for both nuclear and mitochondrial DNA in various tissues.[12]
  • As a fixative agent to preserve mucus, useful for tissue preparation before staining with periodic acid-Schiff base.[13]


  1. ^ "MSDS :: Carnoy's Solution (Fixative)". Archived from the original on 2009-03-27. Retrieved 13 Jan 2009. 
  2. ^ Carnoy J. B. (1887). "Appendice Les Globule Polaires de L'Ascaris Clavata". La Cellule RECUEIL DE CYTOLOGIE ET D'HISTOLOGIE GÉNÉRALE. 3: 276. 
  3. ^ Luz DA, Ribeiro U, Chassot C, Collet E, Silva FS, Cecconello I, Corbett CE (December 2008). "Carnoy's solution enhances lymph node detection: an anatomical dissection study in cadavers". Histopathology. 53 (6): 740–2. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2559.2008.03148.x. PMID 19076686. 
  4. ^ Yoneyama M, Kitayama T, Taniura H, Yoneda Y (August 2003). "Immersion fixation with Carnoy solution for conventional immunohistochemical detection of particular N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor subunits in murine hippocampus". J. Neurosci. Res. 73 (3): 416–26. doi:10.1002/jnr.10622. PMID 12868075. 
  5. ^ Madras J, Lapointe H (March 2008). "Keratocystic odontogenic tumour: reclassification of the odontogenic keratocyst from cyst to tumour". J Can Dent Assoc. 74 (2): 165–165h. PMID 18353202. 
  6. ^ "Odontogenic Keratocyst: The Northwestern USA Experience". Archived from the original on 2009-01-06. Retrieved 14 Jan 2009. 
  7. ^ "Use of Carnoy's Solution in management of odontogenic keratocysts". Archived from the original on 2009-05-17. Retrieved 14 Jan 2009. 
  8. ^ Lee PK, Samman N, Ng IO (April 2004). "Unicystic ameloblastoma--use of Carnoy's solution after enucleation". Int J Oral Maxillofac Surg. 33 (3): 263–7. doi:10.1006/ijom.2003.0496. PMID 15290793. 
  9. ^ Lau SL, Samman N (August 2006). "Recurrence related to treatment modalities of unicystic ameloblastoma: a systematic review". Int J Oral Maxillofac Surg. 35 (8): 681–90. doi:10.1016/j.ijom.2006.02.016. PMID 16782308. 
  10. ^ Marx, Robert E.; Stern, Diane (2003). Oral and maxillofacial pathology: a rationale for diagnosis and treatment. Chicago: Quintessence. p. 684. ISBN 0-86715-390-3. 
  11. ^ Shamsi M, Abdali K, Montazer NR, Kumar PV, Tabatabaee HR (2008). "Comparison of Carnoy's solution and 96% ethyl alcohol fixation in bloody Pap smears". Acta Cytol. 52 (2): 187–90. doi:10.1159/000325477. PMID 18499991. 
  12. ^ Miething F, Hering S, Hanschke B, Dressler J (March 2006). "Effect of fixation to the degradation of nuclear and mitochondrial DNA in different tissues". J. Histochem. Cytochem. 54 (3): 371–4. doi:10.1369/jhc.5B6726.2005. PMID 16260588. 
  13. ^ "Stains File: Carnoy's Fluid". Retrieved 25 Oct 2009.