Eosin Y

What is Eosin Y?


Eosin Y (or just more commonly, eosin) is a water soluble dye and is a red crystalline powder, frequently used in textile dyeing and ink manufacturing. When in the sodium salt form, it’s a biological stain, and is also any of a class of red acid dyes of the xanthene group used as cytoplasmic stains and as counter-stains. Certified by the Biological Stain Commission (BSC), eosin is one of Abbey Color’s most requested products.

Have I Ever Used Eosin?


Indeed you have. Eosin is a dye that is common place in our world and has a diverse range of applications. For instance, the paper industry uses it as a marker, so that red line on a legal pad is most likely eosin. It’s also used in the cosmetic industry, can be found in various pigments, and also in pencil lead.


The most famous use for it, however, is in the medical field.

Eosin in the Medical Field


Some medical applications for eosin have shown substantial growth. Eosin Y, Acid Red 87; BSC Certified is vital in medicine and biological science to show details in cells and microorganisms. It highlights cell granules and nuclei, and mast cells (cells that create other cells). Eosin demonstrates the presence of viruses borne by mosquitoes, or early necrobiotic changes. It is used to characterize tissue cells, protozoans and bacteria. Eosin’s most important medical uses are in blood and bone-marrow testing, including the PAP smear.


Eosin Y also serves as a counterstain for hematoxylin (H&E stain) in histology, and is used in nearly all cancer screening tests.

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