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Neutral red

Neutral red

Systematic name toluylene red
Chemical formula C15H17ClN4
Molecular mass 288.78 g/mol
Density g/cm³
Melting point 290°C
Boiling point °C
CAS number [553-24-2]
(N(C)C)C=C1N C2=C/C3=[N+](C)/C
Disclaimer and references
Neutral red (pH indicator)
below pH 6.8 above pH 8.0
6.8 8.0

Neutral Red (or toluylene red, Basic Red 5, or C.I. 50040) is an eurhodin dye used for staining in histology. It stains cell nuclei red. It is used as a general stain in histology, as a counterstain in combination with other dyes, and for many staining methods. Together with Janus Green B it is used to stain embryonal tissues and supravital staining of blood. Can be used for staining Golgi apparatus in cells and Nissl granules in neurons.

Neutral red can be used as a vital stain, to stain living cells. It is used to stain cell cultures for plaque titration of viruses.

Neutral Red is added to some growth media for bacteria and cell cultures. It usually comes as a chloride salt.

Neutral Red acts as a pH indicator, changing from red to yellow between the pH 6.8-8.0.

Practical Joke Uses

It's claimed that Neutral Red turns human urine red. The Wiretap Practical Joke Archive details doctoring red wine with Neutral Red to convince the subject they are urinating blood. Neutral red's tendency to turn from red to yellow between the pH 6.8-8.0 throws doubt on the validity of this claim.

Similar claims about Methylene Blue exist


This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Neutral_red". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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