Calcified Tissue Research

, Volume 22, Issue 1, pp 219–226 | Cite as

An x-ray diffraction investigation of age-related changes in the crystal structure of bone apatite

  • C. B. Smith
  • D. A. Smith
Original Papers


Evidence relating to the existence of crystalline bone mineral in vivo is considered, and bone apatite crystal structure investigated using an x-ray powder diffraction technique. Specimens of femoral compacta excised post-mortem from male and female subjects ranging from 3 1/2 years to 87 years of age have been studied. Values of the ratio c/a of bone apatite crystal cell axes for females are significantly higher (p<0.05) than for males. Moreover, significant change of c/a with age is observed for males (p=0.0005) but not for females (p=0.30). Differences in c/a are interpreted as indicating substitution of constituent ions in the bone apatite crystals.

Key words

Hydroxyapatite Bone X-ray Diffraction 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1976

Authors and Affiliations

  • C. B. Smith
    • 1
  • D. A. Smith
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Clinical Physics and Bio-EngineeringWest of Scotland Health BoardsGlasgowUK
  2. 2.The Bone Metabolism Research UnitUniversity Department of MedicineGlasgowUK

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