A comparative study on the efficacy of honey and ethanol as cytological fixatives
Keywords:Ethanol, Fixative, Honey, Papanicolaou staining
Background: In cytological fixatives prior to Papanicolaou staining smears are fixed mostly in alcohol or any alcohol based special purpose fixative. Alcohols are costly, hazardous and also there is a problem of disposal. Here, a very cheap and easily available alternate for fixative was being used. The objective was to describe the efficacy of 20% honey as a cytological fixative in comparison to ethanol.
Methods: The study was done on buccal smears from students of Department of MLT, Government Medical College, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India for a period of six months after ethical approval. Two buccal smears were collected from either cheek using wooden spatula/blunt end of the Ayers spatula. One of the smear is fixed in ethanol (95%) and the other smear is fixed in honey (20%). The slides were scored based on the assessment parameters: nuclear staining, cytoplasmic staining, cell morphology, clarity of staining and uniformity of staining.
Results: The study was done on buccal smears, the sample were smeared and fixed onto slides using two fixatives- 95% ethanol and 20% honey. Both reported good quality staining feature, preservation of morphology and a crisp nuclear and cytoplasmic staining. It has also added advantage of being nontoxic, economical, non-flammable, non-hazardous, no problems associated with license of purchase, reduces overall turnaround time and is easy to handle without any sort of irritation.
Conclusions: Thus, the overall study shows that honey has got a fixative action, which can be implemented soon in the industry.
Godkar PB, Godkar DP. Textbook of medical laboratory technology. Second edition, volume 1. Bhalani publishing house; 2008.
Koss LG, Melamed MR, editors. Koss' diagnostic cytology and its histopathologic bases. 5th edition. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2006:1629-1644.
Mandal MD, Mandal S. Honey: its medicinal property and antibacterial activity. Asian Pacific J Trop Biomed. 2011;1(2):154-60.
Lalwani V, Surekha R, Vanishree M, Koneru A, Hunasgi S, Ravikumar S. Honey as an alternative fixative for oral tissue: An evaluation of processed and unprocessed honey. J Oral Maxillofac Pathol. 2015;19(3):342.
National Institutes of Health (NIH). National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). Drugs of Abuse: Alcohol. Retrieved 1/17/2012. Available from: http://www.drugabuse.gov/drugs-abuse/alcohol
Val W. The Plight of the Honeybees. University of California. Archived from the original on 4 March 2007. Retrieved 14 April 2007.
a b c d e "Honey and Bees." at the Wayback Machine (archived 14 March 2010) National Honey Board.
Baker JR. Principles of biological microtechnique. A study of fixation and dyeing. Principles of biological microtechnique. A study of fixation and dyeing. 1958.
Naib ZM. Exfoliative cytology. 3rd edition, Little, Brown and Co., Boston. 1976: 591-600.
Tomasik P, ed. Chemical and functional properties of food saccharides. CRC Press; 2003.
Mulholland S, Chang AB. Honey and lozenges for children with non‐specific cough. The Cochrane Library. 2009.
Bardy J, Slevin NJ, Mais KL, Molassiotis A. A systematic review of honey uses and its potential value within oncology care. J Clin Nurs. 2008;17(19):2604-23.
Chengappa PG. Institutional aspects of agricultural marketing in India. Institutional Change in Indian Agriculture. 2003:331.
Avwioro G, Bankole J, Iyiola S, Avwioro T, Akinola G. One of the properties of honey in wound healing is prevention of autolysis. Der Pharmacia Lettre. 2010;2(3):321-5.
Patil S, Rao RS, Ganavi BS, Majumdar B. Natural sweeteners as fixatives in histopathology: A longitudinal study. J Nat Sci Biol Med. 2015;6(1):6.
Patil S, Rao RS, Ganavi BS, Majumdar B. Natural sweeteners as fixatives in histopathology: A longitudinal study. J Nat Sci Biol Med. 2015;6(1):67.
Lakshminarayanan R. Histological technique a practical manual 2nd edition, Mumbai: Bhalani publishing house. Chapter 2. 2011.
Singh A, Hunasgi S, Koneru A, Vanishree M, Ramalu S, Manvikar V. Comparison of honey with ethanol as an oral cytological fixative: A pilot study. J Cytol/Indian Acad Cytologists. 2015;32(2):113.