Acid-fast mycobacteria resist decolorization by acid-alcohol after primary staining owing to the high lipid (mycolic acid) content in their cell walls. The identification of mycobacteria with auramine O is due to the affinity of the mycolic acid in the cell walls for the fluorochromes. The dye will bind to the mycobacteria, which appear as bright yellow luminous rods against a dark background. The potassium permanganate helps prevent non-specific fluorescence.
All acid-fast organisms will be stained by Auramine O, including some parasites. Slides stained with auramine O may be restained with Ziehl-Neelsen or Kinyoun stain directly, as long as the oil has been removed. This provides a convenient method of confirming and differentiating morphology of positive slides with the traditional stains. The fluorochromes stains are recommended for specimen examination because of their increased sensitivity and speed.
Kit Contains 3 x 8 oz. bottles of each: