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  Relation between the macroscopic pattern of elephant ivory and its three-dimensional micro-tubular network

Albéric, M., Dean, M. N., Gourrier, A., Wagermaier, W., Dunlop, J. W. C., Staude, A., et al. (2017). Relation between the macroscopic pattern of elephant ivory and its three-dimensional micro-tubular network. PLoS One, 12(1): e0166671. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0166671.

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Item Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002C-5149-E Version Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0003-F750-C
Genre: Journal Article

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 Creators:
Albéric, Marie1, Author              
Dean, Mason N.2, Author              
Gourrier, Aurélien, Author
Wagermaier, Wolfgang3, Author              
Dunlop, John W. C.4, Author              
Staude, Andreas, Author
Fratzl, Peter5, Author              
Reiche, Ina, Author
Affiliations:
1Yael Politi, Biomaterialien, Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces, Max Planck Society, ou_1863297              
2Mason Dean (Indep. Res.), Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces, Max Planck Society, ou_2231639              
3Wolfgang Wagermaier, Biomaterialien, Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces, Max Planck Society, ou_1863296              
4John Dunlop, Biomaterialien, Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces, Max Planck Society, ou_1863291              
5Peter Fratzl, Biomaterialien, Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces, Max Planck Society, ou_1863294              

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Free keywords: Open Access
 Abstract: Macroscopic, periodic, dark and bright patterns are observed on sections of elephant tusk, in the dentin part (ivory). The motifs—also called Schreger pattern—vary depending on the orientation in the tusk: on sections perpendicular to the tusk axis, a checkerboard pattern is present whereas on sections longitudinal to it, alternating stripes are observed. This pattern has been used to identify elephant and mammoth ivory in archeological artifacts and informs on the continuous tissue growth mechanisms of tusk. However, its origin, assumed to be related to the 3D structure of empty microtubules surrounded by the ivory matrix has yet to be characterized unequivocally. Based on 2D observations of the ivory microtubules by means of a variety of imaging techniques of three different planes (transverse, longitudinal and tangential to the tusk axis), we show that the dark areas of the macroscopic pattern are due to tubules oblique to the surface whereas bright areas are related to tubules parallel to it. The different microstructures observed in the three planes as well as the 3D data obtained by SR-μCT analysis allow us to propose a 3D model of the microtubule network with helical tubules phase-shifted in the tangential direction. The phase shift is a combination of a continuous phase shift of π every 1 mm with a stepwise phase shift of π/2 every 500 μm. By using 3D modeling, we show how the 3D helical model better represents the experimental microstructure observed in 2D planes compared to previous models in the literature. This brings new information on the origin of the unique Schreger pattern of elephant ivory, crucial for better understanding how archaeological objects were processed and for opening new routes to rethink how biological materials are built.

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 Dates: 2017-01-262017
 Publication Status: Published in print
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 Identifiers: DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0166671
PMID: 0515
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Title: PLoS One
Source Genre: Journal
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Publ. Info: San Francisco, CA : Public Library of Science
Pages: - Volume / Issue: 12 (1) Sequence Number: e0166671 Start / End Page: - Identifier: ISSN: 1932-6203