Trace Elements in Human Teeth

  • Theya Molleson
Part of the Proceedings in Life Sciences book series (LIFE SCIENCES)


Trace elements may be incorporated into the mineral structure of teeth, during the formation of a tooth, during the life-time of the individual and, in the case of material buried in the ground, after death. Much the same range of trace elements may be acquired by the tooth at any of these times and the distribution in the tooth of the elements will not necessarily differ. Yet the implications of trace element acquisition at different times in the life history of a tooth can differ enormously as regards the diet, health or burial conditions of the individual. It is only by a careful and detailed analysis of the distribution patterns of a suite of trace elements within the tooth, and between different teeth of the one individual that there is any possibility of extricating, one from another, the elemental uptake of different periods in the life of the individual.


Lead Level Deciduous Tooth Surface Enamel Apatite Crystal Dental Fluorosis 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Theya Molleson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PaleontologyBritish Museum (Natural History)LondonUK

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