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Localized Crystallization of Calcium Phosphates by Light‐Induced Processes

Von Wiley-VCH zur Verfügung gestellt

Medical treatment options for bones and teeth can be significantly enhanced by taking control over the crystallization of biomaterials like hydroxyapatite in the healing process. Light-induced techniques are particularly interesting for this approach as they offer tremendous accuracy in spatial resolution. However, in the field of calcium phosphates, light-induced crystallization has not been investigated so far. Here, we establish a proof of principle to successfully induce carbonate-hydroxyapatite precipitation by light irradiation. Phosphoric acid is released by a photolabile molecule exclusively after irradiation, combining with calcium ions to form a calcium phosphate in the crystallization medium. 4-Nitrophenylphosphate (4NPP) is established as the photolabile molecule and the system is optimized and fully characterized. We successfully crystallize a calcium phosphate by irradiation in aqueous solution and identify it as carbonate apatite. Control over the localization and stabilization of the carbonate apatite is achieved by a pulsed laser, triggering precipitation in calcium and 4NPP-containing gel matrices. We anticipate that the results of this communication will open up a wide range of new opportunities; both, in the field of chemistry for more sophisticated reaction control in localized crystallization processes, as well as in the field of medicine for enhanced treatment of calcium phosphate containing biomaterials.

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