Optical Clearing with BABB

 

Refractive Index: 1.55   [3]

Clearing Time: Rapid - days   [3]

Type: Non-aqueous   [3]

IHC: Compatible with immunohistochemistry   [3]

FP: Quenches fluorescent protein   [3]

Tissue Morphology: Tissue shrinkage   [3]

Carcinogenicity: Yes   [3]

Difficulty: Easy-to-use   [3]


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Overview

BABB is an abbreviation for Benzyl Alcohol/ Benzyl Benzoate whereas the solution is comprised of two parts benzyl benzoate and one part benzyl alcohol [1]. BABB has been used as an optical clearing agent for decades and works very well for many applications such as the clearing of bones [2]. BABB is compatible with immunolabeling and clears tissues quickly, but quenches fluorescent proteins.  

While BABB is a very rapid tissue clearing technique, it will cause tissues to shrink and can damage microscope lenses. Leica has though developed a 20x objective specifically for use with BABB (Leica BABB Objective). Tissues that are been left in BABB for too long will eventually become brittle and fall apart.