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Mar. Drugs 2018, 16(8), 288;

Blueprints for the Next Generation of Bioinspired and Biomimetic Mineralised Composites for Bone Regeneration

School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Queen’s University Belfast, David Keir Building, Stranmillis Road, Belfast BT9 5AG, UK
School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Queen’s University Belfast, Ashby Building, Stranmillis Road, Belfast BT9 5AH, UK
School of Nursing and Midwifery, Queen’s University Belfast, MBC, 97 Lisburn Road, Belfast BT9 7BL, UK
Department of Biological Sciences, St. Cloud State University, St. Cloud, MN 56301, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 5 August 2018 / Revised: 16 August 2018 / Accepted: 17 August 2018 / Published: 20 August 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Organisms for Bone Regeneration)
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Coccolithophores are unicellular marine phytoplankton, which produce intricate, tightly regulated, exoskeleton calcite structures. The formation of biogenic calcite occurs either intracellularly, forming ‘wheel-like’ calcite plates, or extracellularly, forming ‘tiled-like’ plates known as coccoliths. Secreted coccoliths then self-assemble into multiple layers to form the coccosphere, creating a protective wall around the organism. The cell wall hosts a variety of unique species-specific inorganic morphologies that cannot be replicated synthetically. Although biomineralisation has been extensively studied, it is still not fully understood. It is becoming more apparent that biologically controlled mineralisation is still an elusive goal. A key question to address is how nature goes from basic building blocks to the ultrafine, highly organised structures found in coccolithophores. A better understanding of coccolithophore biomineralisation will offer new insight into biomimetic and bioinspired synthesis of advanced, functionalised materials for bone tissue regeneration. The purpose of this review is to spark new interest in biomineralisation and gain new insight into coccolithophores from a material science perspective, drawing on existing knowledge from taxonomists, geologists, palaeontologists and phycologists. View Full-Text
Keywords: coccolithophore; biomineralisation; bone tissue engineering coccolithophore; biomineralisation; bone tissue engineering

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Walsh, P.J.; Fee, K.; Clarke, S.A.; Julius, M.L.; Buchanan, F.J. Blueprints for the Next Generation of Bioinspired and Biomimetic Mineralised Composites for Bone Regeneration. Mar. Drugs 2018, 16, 288.

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