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Molecular Basis of Biomineralization in Pinctada fucata

  • Rongqing Zhang
  • Liping Xie
  • Zhenguang Yan
Chapter

Abstract

Biomineralization is the accumulation and formation of minerals regulated by living organisms transforming into biological structures and tissues. This is an extremely widespread phenomenon since we’ve found many creatures in all six taxonomic kingdoms which could form biominerals, and more than 60 different types of them have been identified, such as silicates in diatoms and algae, carbonates in invertebrates, and carbonates and calcium phosphates in vertebrates. These minerals often form structures like sea shells and the bone in mammals and birds.

The study of biomineralization started at the first half of the twentieth century by the extensive use of optical microscopy, which helped a lot to identify various types and patterns of structures. It was not until the 1960s and 1970s, with the application of transmission electron microscopy (TEM), the scanning electron microscopy (SEM), radioisotope, the biochemical research on membrane transport, the analysis of bone-related organic materials, and the understanding of the ultrastructure of mineralized materials, was the initial idea of the biomineralization formed. Though some progress has been made in revealing the principles of these processes during the past few decades, there are still a lot of unknowns waiting for more exploration. The main content in this book primarily focused on the following aspects: the identification and function characterization of biomineralization-related genes, including those that encode shell matrix proteins and enzymes and participate in calcium metabolism; the cellular regulation such as cell signaling pathways during biomineralization process; and the ecological studies on biomineralization in Pinctada fucata.

Keywords

Pinctada fucata Biomineralization Molecular basis Introduction Calcium metabolism 

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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rongqing Zhang
    • 1
  • Liping Xie
    • 1
  • Zhenguang Yan
    • 2
  1. 1.School of Life SciencesTsinghua UniversityBeijingChina
  2. 2.Chinese Research Academy of Environmental SciencesBeijingChina

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