This kit from Home Science Tools allows you to differentiate bacteria using the Gram staining method. This is the kit I recommend for students who wish to perform the optional Gram staining lab in my Microbiology course. They can use this kit to identify bacteria from their dental plaque or other bacteria they have isolated.
The kit contains:
- Hucker’s Crystal violet, 15ml
- Ethyl alcohol, 30 ml
- Gram’s Iodine stain, 15ml
- Gram Stain Kit instructions
- Nitrile gloves, pair
- Pipet (medicine dropper)
- Safranin O stain, 15ml
- Slide coverslips
- Plain glass slides, 12/pk
- Instruction booklet
Two major types of bacterial cell walls exist and can be differentiated based on their selective uptake of certain stains in what is known as the Gram stain procedure, named after the man who developed it in 1884, Christian Gram. During Gram staining, bacterial specimens are subjected to a series of cell stains and washes. Bacteria with one type of cell wall retain the purple stain applied during the first step of the procedure. These bacteria are considered Gram positive. Bacteria with the second type of cell wall do not retain the purple stain. Instead, they appear pink as a result of the counterstain safranin. These bacteria are considered Gram negative. Differences in stain uptake during gram staining result from differences in the architecture between the two types of bacterial cell walls.
Gram staining is an important diagnostic tool for identifying the pathogens which cause infectious diseases. In fact, bacteria are often categorized by their reaction to the Gram stain procedure.
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