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Zeitschrift für Kristallographie - Crystalline Materials

Editor-in-Chief: Pöttgen, Rainer

Ed. by Antipov, Evgeny / Boldyreva, Elena V. / Friese, Karen / Huppertz, Hubert / Jahn, Sandro / Tiekink, E. R. T.

IMPACT FACTOR 2018: 1.090
5-year IMPACT FACTOR: 2.159

CiteScore 2018: 1.47

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.892
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.722

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Volume 227, Issue 11


Transient precursor amorphous phases in biomineralization.In the footsteps of Heinz A. Lowenstam

Lia Addadi / Netta Vidavsky / Stephen Weiner
Published Online: 2012-10-08 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1524/zkri.2012.1524


Heinz A. Lowenstam’s discovery in 1967, together with Ken Towe that the magnetite mineral in mature chiton teeth forms from a disordered transient precursor phase, ferrihydrite, remained an isolated curiosity for 30 years. During the last 15 years, many more examples were found in both invertebrates and vertebrates, where the mature crystalline mineral phase is formed through a transient amorphous precursor phase. Here we review this widespread phenomenon, and also describe the details of the transformation process in the formation of the calcitic spicules of the sea urchin larva. We identify many open questions.

Keywords: Amorphous phase; Calcium carbonate; Biomineralization; Transient precursor phase; Sea urchin spicule

About the article

* Correspondence address: Weizmann Institute of Science, Department of Structural Biology, 76100 Rehovot, Israel,

Published Online: 2012-10-08

Published in Print: 2012-11-01

Citation Information: Zeitschrift für Kristallographie - Crystalline Materials, Volume 227, Issue 11, Pages 711–717, ISSN (Print) 2194-4946, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1524/zkri.2012.1524.

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