4% Paraformaldehyde (PFA) Solution in PBS

Size500 mL
ApplicationPreserving Samples, Fixing Cells For Histology
Physical StateThe solution should be clear, colorless, with no precipitate.
Description4% Paraformaldehyde solution in PBS is a ready to use solution used for sample preparation for fixing cells for immunohistochemistry (IHC).

General Description

Paraformaldehyde (PFA) is the polymerization product of formaldehyde with a typical degree of polymerization of 8–100 units. Paraformaldehyde is not a fixative itself; it must be depolymerized to formaldehyde in solution. In cell culture, typical formaldehyde fixing procedure would involve using a 4% formaldehyde solution in phosphate buffered saline (PBS) on ice for 10 minutes. Fixing ensures that sample cell structures stay intact and that antigens are immobilized, while ideally still permitting unfettered access of antibodies to target antigens.

Our 4% Paraformaldehyde is the most preferred fixative agent as it builds covalent cross-links between molecules. This glues them together hence effectively preserving cells and tissue components. Use of this 4% paraformaldehyde can guarantee consistency in the physical and chemical properties of the cell, hence no change in chemical and morphology characteristics of the cells and tissues.

Since the 4% paraformaldehyde is not fixative itself, it is required that formaldehyde is freshly prepared from the PFA stock.


Product Name 4% Paraformaldehyde (PFA) Solution in PBS
SKU/Catalog Number AR1068
Physical State The solution should be clear, colorless, with no precipitate.
Pack Size 500mL
Application Preserving Samples, Fixing Cells For Histology
*Our Boster Guarantee covers the use of this product in the above tested applications.
StorageStore at -20˚C for one year.
Cite This Product 4% Paraformaldehyde (PFA) Solution in PBS (Boster Biological Technology, Pleasanton CA, USA, Catalog # AR1068)
Equivalent N/A


CAS Number30525-89-4
MDL NumberMFCD00133991
Solubility Soluble in water
pH 7.0 - 7.6 at 25°C

Safety and Handling

•Causes serious eye damage .

• Suspected of causing cancer.

• May cause an allergic skin reaction.

• Causes skin irritation.

• Avoid breathing dust/fume/gas/mist/vapors/spray.

• Wear protective gloves/protective clothing/eye protection/face protection.

•IF IN EYES: Rinse cautiously with water for several minutes. Remove contact lenses, if present and easy to do. Continue rinsing.

• Store locked up.

•Dispose of contents/container in accordance with local/regional/national/international regulations.

General Notes

• Adjust pH to 7.2-7.6 with NaH2PO4 if pH <7 after long storage.

• Deposition is normal for this product.

4% Paraformaldehyde Recipe

To prepare a solution of 4% paraformaldehyde you need to use this protocol. The following ingredients are required:

•1M Sodium Hydroxide

•10X phosphate-buffered saline (PBS)

•1M Hydrochloric acid

Note: This should be done in a fume chamber with gloves, safety glasses, and a face mask.

1. To prepare a 4% of paraformaldehyde (PFA) solution in PBS, add 4 grams of granular or prill paraformaldehyde to water (H2O)

2. Use stirring hot plate to heat the solution to 60-degree celsius. Add 1mL of 1M NaOH until the paraformaldehyde is fully dissolved.

3. Add 10 mL of 10x phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) and allow the mixture to cool.

4. Adjust the solution pH with 1M HCL then top up the volume to 100 mL with H2O.

5. Filter the solution to remove any deposit.

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Customer Q&As

  • Q: Is AR1068 suitable for fixing living cells in solution?
    A: 4% Paraformaldehyde (# AR1068) is suitable for fixating living cells in solution.
  • Q: is AR1068 0.2 um filtered?
  • Q: How long can this product be stored after being opened at -20°C?
    A: Please use this product within the shelf life of one year at -20°C after the solution is opened
  • Q: Can I dilute AR1068 from 4% to 1% Paraformaldehyde (PFA) solution in PBS? What is the protocol? Keywords: dilution, concentration
    A: Yes, the 4% Paraformaldehyde can be diluted to 1% in PBS. The dilution protocol is as follows: (1) Prepare the PBS by adding 14.2g Na2HPO4 and 9g NaCl into 1000ml H2O. (2) Mix 500mL 4% Paraformaldehyde with 1500mL PBS thoroughly.
  • Q: How pure (%) is the PFA in your pre-made solution?
    A: Purity of the solid formaldehyde is ≥95%.
  • Q: We will use this to fix bacterial cells from faecal samples. Do you have any reference for this use?
    A: We haven't use AR1068 to fix bacterial cells from faecal samples. We could not provide any reference for this use. We're sorry for the inconvenience.
  • Q: Since we will be using this on a daily basis, should it be stored at room temperature or at 4°C? What is the shelf life for these conditions?
    A: Please store the product at 4°C if it is frequently used. The shelf life is 3 months at 4°C. For long storage, please store at -20°C.
  • Q: Is this product DNA/RNA free?
    A: Yes, AR1068 is DNA/RNA free.
  • Q: What is the PBS concentration?
    A: PBS concentration is 0.01g/mL.
  • Q: What is the detailed composition of AR1068?
    A: AR1068 contains paraformaldehyde, Na2HPO4, NaCl, and DEPC.
  • Q: Is the 4% PFA solution in PBS methanol free?
    A: Yes, it is methanol free.
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