Interactions between Acidic Matrix Macromolecules and Calcium Phosphate Ester Crystals: Relevance to Carbonate Apatite Formation in Biomineralization
Control over crystal growth by acidic matrix macromolecules is an important process in the formation of many mineralized tissues. Earlier studies on the interactions between acidic macromolecules and carboxylate- and carbonate-containing crystals showed that the proteins recognize a specific stereochemical motif on the interacting plane. Here we show that a similar stereochemical motif is recognized by acidic mollusc shell macromolecules interacting with four different organic calcium phosphate-containing crystals. In addition, an acidic protein from vertebrate tooth dentin was also observed to recognize a similar structural motif in one of the crystals. The characteristic motif recognized is composed of rows of calcium ions and phosphates arranged in a plane defined by two free oxygens and a phosphorus atom emerging perpendicular to the affected face. These observations may have a direct bearing on the manner in which control over crystal growth is exerted on carbonate apatite crystals commonly found in vertebrate tissues.
Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B
- Pub Date:
- January 1992