Amorphous Ca-phosphate precursors for Ca-carbonate biominerals mediated by Chromohalobacter marismortui

María Angustias Rivadeneyra, Agustín Martín-Algarra*, Mónica Sánchez-Román, Antonio Sánchez-Navas, José Daniel Martín-Ramos

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Although diverse microbial metabolisms are known to induce the precipitation of carbonate minerals, the mechanisms involved in the bacterial mediation, in particular nucleation, are still debated. The study of aragonite precipitation by Chromohalobacter marismortui during the early stages (3-7 days) of culture experiments, and its relation to bacterial metabolic pathways, shows that: (1) carbonate nucleation occurs after precipitation of an amorphous Ca phosphate precursor phase on bacterial cell surfaces and/or embedded in bacterial films; (2) precipitation of this precursor phase results from local high concentrations of PO4 3- and Ca 2+ binding around bacterial cell envelopes; and (3) crystalline nanoparticles, a few hundred nanometres in diametre, form after dissolution of precursor phosphate globules, and later aggregate, allowing the accretion of aragonite bioliths.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)922-932
Number of pages11
JournalISME Journal
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2010


  • Amorphous calcium phosphate
  • C. marismortui
  • nanoparticles
  • precursor


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