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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Modified Collection Technique for Microscopic Examination of Airsac Membranes

Author
item Kunkle, Robert

Submitted to: Proceedings of North Central Avian Disease Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: August 4, 1995
Publication Date: N/A

Technical Abstract: Airsacculitis, a significant disease of poultry, is caused by a variety of infectious agents. Reports on the pathogenesis of airsacculitis are under-represented in the scientific literature relative to the economic significance of the disease. Technical complexities encumber research in this area; the airsac is a difficult organ to prepare for histopathology examinations. The airsac membrane is a thin, transparent, and delicate tissue prone to tearing and folding when excised. The difficulty in handling the membrane gives rise to many artifacts which can obscure features of microscopic morphology and can lead to misinterpretations. A ring-stabilization technique for collection of avian airsac membranes was modified to allow dehydration and paraffin embedding of samples to be done by an automated system and to simplify processing for transmission electron microscopy without sacrificing the quality of the tissue sections obtained with the original method. In addition to avian airsac membranes, the technique has been suitable for the collection and processing of a wide range of broad, flat tissues, including pig pericardium, mesentery, tendinous diaphragm, and mediastinum, turkey meninges and intestines, and chicken chorioallantoic membranes. Morphometric studies of poult enteritides would be facilitated by this collection technique in that uniform cross-sections are easily obtained. The technique is also applicable to tissue explant and immunohistochemical studies. Additionally, the technique is being used to support membranes during processing and examination by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Examination of explants by SEM will reveal adherence patterns of airsac pathogens.

Last Modified: 8/29/2014
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