This is a fascinating tour, at micrometre and nanometre scales, of the crystal-like units that make up shells and calcareous skeletons. Despite their wide range of sizes, shapes and growth patterns, skeletal units in Ca-carbonate structures have surprising similarities at the 10 nm scale. The authors have studied the calcification process at the genomic level and demonstrate here the chronology of the crystallization process involving organic molecules.

The book begins with a review of the history of research on biominerals that sets the scene for discussions on microstructural sequence, the mineralogical and organic components involved, the origin of microstructural diversity,...

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