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Nano- to mesoscale structures and the biomineralization mechanism of the initial aragonite prisms in the shell of freshwater pearl mussel (Vol. 41, No.1, 2021) TEXT SIZE: A A A

GAO Ruo-he, WANG Ri-ze, FENG Xin, ZHANG Gang-sheng*

(School of Resources, Environment and Materials, Guangxi University, Nanning 530004, China)

Abstract: The morphology of the initial prismatic layer, the internal structure and crystallographic properties of the individual initial prisms have been investigated in this paper by using the field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM), focused ion beam (FIB) for sample preparation, and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Here, we have found that the prisms were directly formed by the growth of directionally attached aragonite nano-particles. Then, the rapid deposition of nanoparticles resulted in the non-strictly directional growth of aragonite prisms which are characterized with loose and porous surfaces. Finally, the prisms were grown along the vertical direction of inner surface of the periostracum of shell due to the competitive growth mechanism of prisms. These findings will enhance our understandings on the growth process of prismatic layer of shell, and will provide a new perspective for studying the biomineralization process of nacreous layer.

Keywords: prismatic layer; mesoscale structure; aragonite nanoparticle; directional attachment; competitive growth

ACTA MINERALOGICA SINICA Vol. 41, No.1, 2021, page 95-100

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