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(cell and molecular biology)
The science concerned with the chemistry of cells and cell components, primarily with the location of chemical constituents and enzymes.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a branch of cytology that studies the chemistry of cell structures and the location of chemical compounds within a cell and their transformations in connection with the functioning of the cell and its individual components.

Cytochemistry arose in the 1820’s chiefly owing to the research of the French botanist F. V. Raspail, who summarized his ideas on cytochemistry in his work Essaie de chimie microscopique appliquée à la physiologie (1830). Staining techniques were subsequently developed to observe carbohydrates, proteins, amino acids, mineral compounds, and lipids under the microscope. The introduction of the use of aniline dyes in the late 19th and early 20th centuries led to major advances in cytochemistry. The principal approach in cytochemistry involves conducting appropriate chemical reactions in histological specimens and then evaluating them under a microscope. The evaluation may be qualitative (visual) or quantitative, using cytophotometry, autoradiography, and other methods.

The use of electron microscopy and immunochemical techniques in cytochemistry has been developing rapidly in recent years. Also used are microchemical methods, which make it possible to excise and examine individual cells, and centrifugation, which makes it possible to obtain tissue fractions abounding in certain types of cells or subcellular structures, such as nuclei, mitochondria, microsomes, and cytoplasmic membranes.

The main achievements of cytochemistry include the demonstration of the constant quantity of the DNA in the chromosome set, as well as the demonstration of the participation of macro-molecules (nucleic acids and proteins) in the specific functional activity of the cell and their migration within the cell from the nucleus to the cytoplasm and from the cell body to the outgrowths and back.


Pearse, A. G. E. Gistokhimiia teoreticheskaia i prikladnaia. Moscow, 1962. (Translated from English.)
Vvedenie v kolichestvennuiu tsitokhimiiu. Moscow, 1969. (Translated from English.)


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Out of 56 cases in total, 36 cases were acute, AML was 24, which was 67%, and ALL was 12, at 33%, for the cytochemical staining with both SBB, and PAS.
Morphological analysis along with cytochemical stain (SBB) rendered the diagnosis in >80% of our AML cases.
Cytochemical evaluation of sperm chromatin and DNA integrity in couples with unexplained recurrent spontaneous abortions.
Cell block preparation gives an additional advantage as architectural details can be studied, multiple sections can be cut, and cytochemical stains and immunohistochemical markers can be applied.
Cytochemical staining of paraffin sections with Periodic acid-Schiff (PAS) reagent stained every part of the animal, including the mesoglea, in varying shades of purple.
This was quickly followed by the world's first automated five-part differential analyzer, the Technicon Hemalog-D, an instrument based on a combination of optical and cytochemical methods.
Morphologic and cytochemical characteristics of blood cells of juvenile loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta).
Bone marrow aspiration alone is usually sufficient to diagnose nutritional anaemias, most of the acute leukaemias and Immune Thrombocytopenias because of ease of the applying pearl iron stain and other cytochemical stains on aspirate smears but it does not provide important diagnostic information in patients with granulomatous disease, myelofibrosis and bone marrow infiltration4.
Cytochemical and ultrastructural observations of anthers and pollen grains in Lathyrus undulatus Boiss.