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BY-NC-ND 3.0 license Open Access Published by De Gruyter June 2, 2014

Probable Phase Composition of the Mineral in Bone

F. C. M. Driessens


Formulas proposed for the mineral of bone were reviewed. Literature data were collected where Ca, P, Na, Mg and CO3 are determined in the same samples. These data were analyzed for their conformity to the above mentioned formulas. According to this analysis Mg is contained in a phase having the Ca/P of magnesium whitlockite within the limits of error. Na is contained in a carbonated calcium phosphate phase which in analogy with synthetic systems must have the apatite structure. The Ca/P ratio of the remaining "rest phase" is 2. This is based on the composi­ tion of 101 bone mineral samples taken from fishes, reptiles, amphibians, birds and mammals. The CO3 content of the bone samples agrees with the formula

Ca8 (PO4)4 (CO3) (OH)2 · x H2O

for the "rest phase" within the limits of experimental error. Such a compound has, however, not been found in synthetic systems. Human bone contains about 15% magnesium whitlockite, 25% of the Na and CO3 containing apatite and the rest is the carbonated calcium phosphate with Ca/P = 2. It is presumed that this compound has a structure similar to that of octo calcium phosphate and that most of the citrate ions which always occur in bone mineral samples are in­ corporated in that phase.

Received: 1980-1-15
Published Online: 2014-6-2
Published in Print: 1980-6-1

© 1946 – 2014: Verlag der Zeitschrift für Naturforschung

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 License.

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