The nanometer-scale bending structure in the enamel-dentin interfacial region of bovine teeth was clarified using detailed electron micrographs. We found that enamel prisms of width 5-10 μm in the enamel are regarded as a bundle of nanometer-scale hydroxyapatite (HA) fibers of width 20-30 nm that are connected to the enamel-dentin interface. The radial arrangements of HA fibers elongated in the c-axis were formed on the dentin surface at the boundary. The orientation adjustment of the HA fibers was observed through stepwise bending with a gradual change of the c direction in the ordered parallel array of the enamel prisms. Our observation suggests that the crystallographic ordering in the enamel layer originates from the growth-induced orientation of HA crystals in the interfacial region.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Chemical Engineering(all)