for silanizing cover slips, not only is dichlorodimethylsilane
nasty stuff, but toluene is also quite nasty! i would reccomend
Prosil 28. sure its toxic, but at least it is water soluble.
the main challenge is separating all the coverslips so they
don't stick together. you can buy cute little trays that hold
a dozen or so coverslips. a cheaper, larger scale method is to
cut pieces of stainless steel screen to fit in a casserole dish.
you can fit up to a dozen layers in a 5 cm deep pan this way. lay
the cover slips on each piece of screen in a monolayer. wear
gloves while laying out the slips to avoid fingerprints.
an extra piece of screen on the top will allow you to empty
liquids from the dish while retaining the cover slips.
mix 50 ml Prosil 28 in 2 liter H20, soak the slides for up to an
hour. drain and rinse in water. drain and rinse in methanol. drain and
dry in an oven (we used
225 d, but i can't remember whether that was fahrenheit or celsius).
with the screen method, laying out the slips is tedious, but picking
them up is not. lift out the screens, emptying the slips into the dish.
pour them into a container.
i picked up this method in the banaszak lab.
the only problem i have ever encountered is if the
Prosil is seriously out of date; then a smudgy film covers the slips.
An expiration date is printed right on the bottle.
for the less resourceful, some vendors such as Hampton Research will
sell you pre-silanized slides.
University of California-Irvine
schuller at indigo2.biomol.uci.edu
current favorite web site:
Royal Tyrell Museum of Paleontology in Drumheller, Alberta