Biomineralization is a process of creating crystalline structures under biological control. The process takes place in hard tissues, such as bones, cartilages, and teeth. Biominerals are a combination of a crystal phase deposited onto an organic matrix. Inorganic components are mainly responsible for the biomineral hardness, while the organic matrix controls the shape, size, and polymorph of the crystals. Within the organic matrix, proteins exhibit a special biomineralization activity. Among them, one can distinguish insoluble collagen and soluble noncollagenous proteins. It is particularly noteworthy that noncollagenous proteins are intrinsically disordered proteins. High flexibility, acidic nature, and susceptibility to modifications make them especially adapted to the biomineralization control. This review paper is dedicated to the proteins which are involved in biomineralization of bones and teeth.
Part of the book: Contemporary Topics about Phosphorus in Biology and Materials