Definition of safranine in English:


(also safranin)

Pronunciation /ˈsafrəˌnēn/ /-nin/ /ˈsæfrəˌnin/


  • Any of a large group of synthetic azo dyes, mainly red, used as biological stains.

    ‘At low power magnification, entire radial stem sections were imaged and the area stained by the safranin determined relative to the total amount of xylem tissue.’
    • ‘Ten sections were stained with safranin / fast green, toluidine blue or ferrous sulfate for each of the two stems and two ages.’
    • ‘The dye washed out of the Gram negative bacteria with alcohol and a pick counter stain, safranin, is added to color them so they can be easily seen.’
    • ‘Cross-sections were cut using an ultramicrotome and stained with safranin and light green.’
    • ‘All specimens were stained with a 1% solution of safranin in 30% ethanol for 10 min under a vacuum and then for 1 h in an incubator at 35°C.’


Mid 19th century (denoting the yellow coloring matter in saffron): from French.