Nucleation and growth from a biomineralization perspective

Biomineralization processes occur ubiquitously through a heterogeneous nucleation process. This despite the fact that nucleation follows a classical or no classical, two-step, pathway. In addition, in mineralizing organisms, the growth process can also take place through a classical path wherein instead of addition of single ions to the growing crystal nuclei, amorphous nanoparticles that crystallize on the growing crystal nuclei are utilized. After many years of evolution, organisms have established diverse strategies that follow the above principles. The molecular and structural details of those processes are for many aspects still unknown. In this chapter, a few representative cases among the most studied biominerals are presented. The final section is devoted to a summary of selected recent studies on the effect of ocean acidification on the biomineral synthesis and features.

Falini G. & Fermani S., 2017. Nucleation and growth from a biomineralization perspective. In Van Driessche A. E. S., Kellermeier M., Benning L. G. & Gebauer D. (Eds.), New Perspectives on Mineral Nucleation and Growth, pp. 185-197. Book chapter (subscription required).

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