[3dem] Problems blotting the liquid ethane

Terje Dokland dokland at uab.edu
Fri Feb 22 11:03:34 PST 2008

Hi James,
What's the appearance of the contamination that you mention? I  
sometimes see  a kind of quasi-crystalline layer or sheet with a  
characteristic striated pattern that appears to lie on top of the  
ice. I always assumed it was dirt from the film and it always seemed  
to disappear when I washed the grids throroughly in chloroform prior  
to use. Could it be ethane, I wonder?

On Feb 22, 2008, at 12:48 PM, James Conway wrote:

> Terje,
> For what its worth, Wim Busing showed me how he puts a small piece  
> of blotting paper between the ethane cup and surrounding plastic  
> for blotting the ethane away. I do it sometimes, other times I  
> can't be bothered. Doesn't seem to make much difference. I do  
> sometimes see contamination on the grid that could be ethane, but  
> could also be some residue from using tweezers, ethane cup, grid,  
> cryo-holder that were not sufficiently clean.
> James
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> James Conway, PhD.,
> Department of Structural Biology
> University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
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