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Gomori’s Trichrome for Muscle and Collagen

Gomori's Trichrome

for Muscle and Collagen



  • Weigert’s iron hematoxylin or equivalent
  • Solution A
    Chromotrope 2R0.6g
    Fast green FCF0.3g
    Phosphotungstic acid0.6g
    Acetic acid, glacial1mL
    Distilled water99mL
  • Solution B
    Acetic acid, glacial0.2mL
    Distilled water100mL

Tissue Sample

5µ paraffin sections of neutral buffered formalin fixed tissue are suitable. Other fixatives are likely to be satisfactory. Most trichrome stains benefit from picric acid or mercuric chloride fixation. Formalin fixed tissues may benefit from secondary fixation of sections in Bouin’s fluid.


  1. Bring sections to water via xylene and ethanol.
  2. Stain nuclei with an acid resistant nuclear stain.
  3. Place into solution A for 5-20 minute.
  4. Quickly rinse off stain with distilled water.
  5. Rinse with solution B.
  6. Dehydrate with ethanol.
  7. Clear with xylene and mount with a resinous medium.

Expected Results

  • Nuclei  –  black
  • Cytoplasm  –  red
  • Collagen  –  green


  • The time in solution A should be determined empirically. Once a satisfactory stain has been achieved, the time should remain constant. Any change in fixation, processing or section thickness warrants reviewing the staining time.
  • Light green SF yellowish can replace Fast green FCF.
  • Wheatley recommended this trichrome for protozoa in intestinal smears.
  • Engel & Cunningham modified this method to differentiate muscle fibre types in cryostat sections.

Safety Note

Prior to handling any chemical, consult the Safety Data Sheet (SDS) for proper handling and safety precautions.


  1. Gray, Peter. (1954)
    The Microtomist’s Formulary and Guide.
    Originally published by: The Blakiston Co.
    Republished by: Robert E. Krieger Publishing Co.
    Gomori, (1950),
    Technical Bulletin, vol.20, pp.77
    Wheatley, (1951)
    Technical Bulletin, vol.21, pp.92
  2. Humason, G. L., (1967)
    Animal tissue techniques, Ed. 2
    W. H. Freeman and Company, San Francisco, Ca, USA