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The use of the stable isotope 44Ca in studies of calcium incorporation into dentin.

Journal article
Authors Ted Lundgren
E U Engström
R Levi-Setti
Anders Linde
Jörgen G Norén
Published in Journal of microscopy
Volume 173
Issue Pt 2
Pages 149-54
ISSN 0022-2720
Publication year 1994
Published at Institute of Odontology, Department of Oral Biochemistry
Institute of Odontology, Department of Pedodontics
Pages 149-54
Language en
Keywords Animals, Autoradiography, Calcium Isotopes, Calcium Radioisotopes, analysis, Dentin, chemistry, Incisor, Mass Spectrometry, methods, Rats, Rats, Sprague-Dawley, Tooth Calcification
Subject categories Paedodontics


The incorporation into rat incisor dentin of two calcium isotopes, the stable 44Ca and the radioactive 45Ca, was studied using secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS) step-scanning and imaging, and autoradiography, respectively. The results demonstrated a time-dependent incorporation of the calcium isotopes into the mineral phase of dentin. With the SIMS step-scanning, detecting 44Ca, the ion yield was high in the odontoblasts 2 min after intravenous injection. After 10 min a marked increase in signal intensity was found at the dentin mineralization front. This result was consistent with those obtained by 45Ca autoradiography; a peak of incorporation occurred 10 min after injection of the isotope. Likewise, localization of 44Ca to the mineralization front could be demonstrated 10 min after injection by SIMS imaging. In images obtained at earlier intervals, no such increase in ion yield could be detected. The results show that the nonradioactive, stable isotope 44Ca can be used as a marker for biomineralization in a similar way to radioactive 45Ca.

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