In biology, mineralization refers to a process where an inorganic substance precipitates in an organic matrix. This may be due to normal biological processes that take place during the life of an organism such as the formation of bones, egg shells, teeth, coral, and other exoskeletons. This term may also refer to abnormal processes that result in kidney and gall stones.
Mineralization can be subdivided into different categories depending on the following: the organisms or processes that create chemical conditions necessary for mineral formation, the origin of the substrate at the site of mineral precipitation, and the degree of control that the substrate has on crystal morphology, composition, and growth. These subcategories include: biomineralization, organomineralization, and inorganic mineralization, which can be subdivided further. However, usage of these terms vary widely in scientific literature because there are no standardized definitions. The following definitions are based largely on a paper written by Dupraz et al. (2009), which provided a framework for differentiating these terms.
Biomineralization, biologically-controlled mineralization, occurs when crystal morphology, growth, composition, and location is completely controlled by the cellular processes of a specific organism. Examples include the shells of invertebrates, such as molluscs and brachiopods. Additionally, mineralization of collagen provides the crucial compressive strength for the bones, cartilage, and teeth of vertebrates.
This type of mineralization includes both biologically-induced mineralization and biologically-influenced mineralization.
Inorganic mineralization is a completely abiotic process. Chemical conditions necessary for mineral formation develop via environmental processes, such as evaporation or degassing. Furthermore, the substrate for mineral deposition is abiotic (i.e. contains no organic compounds) and there is no control on crystal morphology or composition. Examples of this type of mineralization include cave formations, such as stalagmites and stalactites.
Bone mineralization occurs in human body by cells called osteoblasts.
Calcification is the accumulation of calcium salts in a body tissue. It normally occurs in the formation of bone, but calcium can be deposited abnormally in soft tissue, causing it to harden. Calcifications may be classified on whether there is mineral balance or not, and the location of the calcification. Calcification may also refer to the processes of normal mineral deposition in biological systems, such as the formation of stromatolites or mollusc shells (see Mineralization (biology) or Biomineralization).Mineralization
Mineralization may refer to:
Mineralization (biology), when an inorganic substance precipitates in an organic matrix
Mineralization (geology), the hydrothermal deposition of economically important metals in the formation of ore bodies or lodes
Mineralization (soil science), the release of plant-available compounds such as ammonium during decomposition
Mineralization of bone
In biogeochemistry, remineralization (US; UK Spelling: remineralisation) refers to the breakdown or transformation of organic matter (those molecules derived from a biological source) into its simplest inorganic forms. These transformations form a crucial link within ecosystems as they are responsible for liberating the energy stored in organic molecules and recycling matter within the system to be reused as nutrients by other organisms.Remineralization is normally viewed as it relates to the cycling of the major biologically-important elements such as carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus. While crucial to all ecosystems, the process receives special consideration in aquatic settings, where it forms a significant link in the biogeochemical dynamics and cycling of aquatic ecosystems.