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Citrate key in bone's nanostructure
Date:6/8/2011

ion with Ames Lab faculty scientists Surya Mallapragada and Muffit Akinc, using a polymer template with various concentrations of citrate to synthesize apatite nanocrystals. At higher concentrations, the nanocrystals that formed were thinner and should therefore be more resistant to crack propagation. This work was published in the April 12 issue of Chemistry of Materials.

"At this point, we feel that citrate probably also has a role in the biomineralization of the apatite," Schmidt-Rohr said. "It's also been noted in the literature that as an organism ages, the nanocrystal thickness increases and the citrate concentration goes down," Schmidt-Rohr said, "and there's also support from clinical studies that citrate is good for bones," adding that one of the leading supplements for bone strength contains calcium citrate.

"While calcium loss is a major symptom in osteoporosis, the decline of citrate concentration may also contribute to bone brittleness," he said.


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Contact: Kerry Gibson
kgibson@ameslab.gov
515-294-1405
DOE/Ames Laboratory
Source:Eurekalert  

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