Red cell lysis with NH4Cl ?

Curt Ashendel ashendel at
Sun Feb 5 23:18:20 EST 1995

On 3 Feb 1995 12:43:08 -0600, 
Steve Konings  <skonings at> wrote:

>Mike Morris (mike at wrote:
>: Can someone remind me of the protocol (ie the conc. of NH4Cl needed
>: to lyse RBC in human blood)? I haven't done it for years, and I 
>: cannot find a recipe anywhere (I guess everyone except me knows
>: it by heart :(  
>I use 0.8% NH4Cl and 0.1% EDTA-Na3 in distilled H20.

I also did this years ago and learned the hard way that the pH of this 
solution drops fairly quickly due to NH3 evaporation, and cells don't like 
it if it drops too low.  Make it fresh or at least check its pH before 
using it each time. 

Curt Ashendel
Purdue University
West Lafayette, IN
ashendel at

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