Calcified Tissue International

, Volume 45, Issue 3, pp 157–164

The carbonate environment in bone mineral: A resolution-enhanced fourier transform infrared spectroscopy study


  • C. Rey
    • Laboratory for the Study of Skeletal Disorders and Rehabilitation, Department of Orthoapedic Surgery, Children's HospitalHarvard Medical School
  • B. Collins
    • Department of ChemistryNational Institute of Environmental Health Science
  • T. Goehl
    • Department of ChemistryNational Institute of Environmental Health Science
  • I. R. Dickson
    • Department of MedicineUniversity of Cambridge
  • M. J. Glimcher
Laboratory Investigations

DOI: 10.1007/BF02556059

Cite this article as:
Rey, C., Collins, B., Goehl, T. et al. Calcif Tissue Int (1989) 45: 157. doi:10.1007/BF02556059


The environment of carbonate ions in bones of different species (rat, rabbit, chicken, cow, human) was investigated by Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) associated with a self-deconvolution technique. The carbonate bands in thev2 CO32− domain show three components which were identified by using synthetic standards and different properties of the apatitic structure (ionic affinity for crystallographic locations, ionic exchange). The major component at 871 cm−1 is due to carbonate ions located in PO43− sites (type B carbonate). A band at 878 cm−1 was exclusively assigned to carbonate ions substituting for OH ions in the apatitic structure (type A carbonate). A band at 866 cm−1 not previously observed was shown to correspond to a labile carbonate environment. The intensity ratio of type A to type B carbonate appears remarkably constant in all bone samples. The 866 cm−1 carbonate band varies in its relative intensity in different species.

Key words

CarbonateBone mineralCarbonate apatiteFourier transform infrared spectroscopy

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1989