Biologic Precipitation of Fluorite

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Science  27 Dec 1968:
Vol. 162, Issue 3861, pp. 1496-1498
DOI: 10.1126/science.162.3861.1496


X-ray diffraction patterns show that the statoliths of marine mysid crustaceans are composed of fluorite, and that this mineral is also a principal phase of the gizzard plates of some tectibranch gastropods. A phosphatic phase is also indicated by chemical analyses in the gizzard plates, but its crystallochemical characterization has not been feasible by x-ray diffraction. The occurrence of fluorite in mysid statoliths confirms the earlier interpretations based on insufficient documentation. Fixation of fluorine in hard tissues of marine invertebrates is extensive in the shelf seawaters and minor in the bathyal zone of the oceans.

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