Curcuma longa extract as a histological dye for collagen fibres and red blood cells


Dr O. G. Avwioro, Department of Histopathology, School of Medical Laboratory Science, Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital, PMB 5538 lle Ife, Osun State, Nigeria. T: 2348037149777; E:


Crude ethanolic extract and column chromatographic fractions of the Allepey cultivar of Curcuma longa Roxb, commonly called turmeric (tumeric) in commerce, were used as a stain for tissue sections. Staining was carried out under basic, acidic and neutral media conditions. Inorganic and organic dissolution solvents were used. The stain was used as a counterstain after alum and iron haematoxylins. C. longa stained collagen fibres, cytoplasm, red blood cells and muscle cells yellow. It also stained in a fashion similar to eosin, except for its intense yellow colour. Preliminary phytochemical evaluation of the active column fraction revealed that it contained flavonoids, free anthraquinone and deoxy sugar. A cheap, natural dye can thus be obtained from C. longa.