Cheek cells are eukaryoticcells (cells the contain a nucleus and other organelles within enclosed in amembrane) that space easily burned from the mouth lining. It"s as such easy toobtain them for observation.

You are watching: Cheek cells stained with methylene blue

Some of the key parts the acell include:

1. Cell membrane (outer border of the cell)

2. Cytoplasm (the liquid within the cell)

3. Nucleus (at the center of the cell and controls cabinet functions)

4. Organelles (e.g. Mitochondria-Organelles space cell structures withspecific functions)

Using organic stainssuch as methylene blue, it"s possible to plainly observe and differentiate thedifferent parts of a cell. This is because the stain will shade some parts ofthe cell and not others, permitting them come be clearly observed.


Sterile noodle swabMicroscope covering slipsMethylene Blue solution (0.5% come 1%)DropperBlotting paper/Tissue paper

How come Prepare a Wet mount of Cheek Cells

Before starting, it"salways essential to ensure that the working surface ar is clean and that girlfriend arewearing a pair the clean gloves to prevent contamination.

Cheek cells have the right to beeasily acquired by tenderness scraping the within of the mouth using a clean,sterile noodle swab.

Once the cells have been obtained,the following procedure is supplied for cheek cell wet mountain preparation:

place a autumn of physiological saline on a clean microscope slide(central part of the slide)smear the cotton swab on come the center (part comprise the salinedrop) that the clean on slide for about 4 seconds to get the cells on come the centerof the slideadd a fall of methylene blue equipment on come the smear and gentlyplace a cover slip on optimal (to cover the stain and the cells)any excess solution deserve to be eliminated by touching one side of theslide with a document towel or blotting the on slide on the microscopic lense for monitoring using 4 x or 10x objective to find the cellsonce the cells have actually been found, they deserve to then be perceived at highermagnificatio


* Note - used cotton swabsand cotton towel have to be safely discarded in the trash and also not left lied onthe working table.

cheek cells stained with methylene blue through Joseph Elsbernd at

Why do we need to Stain the Cells?

The cell has actually differentparts, and also those that can absorb stains or dyes are described as chromatic.Having soaked up the stain, these components of the cell become an ext visible underthe microscope and also can therefore be easily identified from various other parts ofthe very same cell.

Without stains, cell would show up to be nearly transparent,making it an overwhelming to differentiate its parts.

Methylene blue has a stringaffinity for both DNA and RNA. When it comes in call with the two, a darkerstain is produced and also can be perceived under the microscope.

The nucleus in ~ thecentral component of the cheek cell consists of DNA. When a autumn of methylene blue isintroduced, the cell core is stained, which renders it stand out and also be clearlyseen under the microscope.

Although the entire cell shows up light blue incolor, the nucleus in ~ the main part that the cabinet is much darker, i m sorry allowsit to be identified.


On mounting the wet slide,the complying with will be observed:

Large irregularly shaped cell with distinctive cell membranes.A unique nucleus at the central part of every individual cell(dark blue in color).


This is simple and funexperiment that will show kids the an easy structure that a cell and its majorparts. For basic identification of the parts, the parental or teacher have the right to firstshow the children some samples that the cells in advance.This will help themidentify different parts through ease.

Once this has actually been achieved, children can moveon come the following stage of discovering the attributes of these different parts.

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** find prepared microscopic lense slides and also equipment to correctly perform microscope experiments.

See also: Epithelial Cells

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