stain

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stain

a dye or similar reagent, used to colour specimens for microscopic study
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005

Stain (microbiology)

Any colored, organic compound, usually called dye, used to stain tissues, cells, cell components, or cell contents. The dye may be natural or synthetic. The object stained is called the substrate. The small size and transparency of microorganisms make them difficult to see even with the aid of a high-power microscope. Staining facilitates the observation of a substrate by introducing differences in optical density or in light absorption between the substrate and its surround or between different parts of the same substrate. In electron microscopy, and sometimes in light microscopy (as in the silver impregnation technique of staining flagella or capsules), staining is accomplished by depositing on the substrate ultraphotoscopic particles of a metal such as chromium or gold (the so-called shadowing process); or staining is done by treating the substrate with solutions of metallic compounds such as uranyl acetate or phosphotungstic acid. Stains may be classified according to their molecular structure. They may also be classified according to their chemical behavior into acid, basic, neutral, and indifferent. This classification is of more practical value to the biologist. See Medical bacteriology

McGraw-Hill Concise Encyclopedia of Bioscience. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

Stain

A coloring liquid or dye for application to any porous material, most often wood; thinner than paint and readily absorbed by the wood so that the texture and grain of the wood is enhanced, and not concealed.
Illustrated Dictionary of Architecture Copyright © 2012, 2002, 1998 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved

stain

[stān]
(materials)
A nonprotective coloring matter used on wood surfaces; imparts color without obscuring the wood grains.
Any colored, organic compound used to stain tissues, cells, cell components, cell contents, or other biological substrates for microscopic examination.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

stain

1. A discoloration in the surface of wood, plastic, sealant, etc.
2. A colorant for enhancing wood grain during finishing.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
(1, 7) According to the Laboratory Test Handbook, "Wright's stain is no longer recommended, as it is less sensitive, although still specific." (5) Eosinophils are generally reported as the percentage of eosinophils per 100 white cells present in the preparation; 100 to 1,000 cells are counted, depending on laboratory protocol and number of cells present on the slide.
The stains were mostly Gram stains, Wright's stain, and a cold carbol fuchsin stain for AFB.
Our "Name the Stain" centerpiece was an old lab coat festooned with a dozen numbered stains, from iodine and blood to eosin and Wright's stain. "Hollywood Squares" it wasn't, but it certainly was diverting--and no one, by the way, got a perfect score.