Analysis of some elements in primary enamel during postnatal mineralization

Swed Dent J. 2009;33(2):85-95.


The primary teeth start to mineralize in utero and continue development and maturation during the first year of life.The aim of this study was to investigate the concentrations of some elements, C, F, Na, Mg, Cl, K and Sr, by secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS) in human primary incisors at different stages of mineralization.The teeth derived from an autopsy material from children who had died in sudden infant death.The buccal enamel of specimens from the ages 1, 2, 3, 4, 6 and 19 months, respectively, was analyzed. It was evident that posteruptive effects play an important role in composition of the outermost parts of the enamel. Before the tooth erupts, the concentrations of the elements vary with the maturation grade of the mineralization in the enamel. Sodium was the element with the highest concentration of the measured elements and chlorine was the element of lowest concentration.The 19 month old specimen, considered as the only mature and erupted tooth, showed to differ from the other specimens.The concentration of fluorine, in the 19 month old specimen's outermost surface, is readily seen higher compared with the other specimens at this depth zone. In the 19 month old specimen the concentration of carbon is lower. Potassium, sodium and chlorine have higher concentrations, in general, in the 19 month old specimen compared with the immature specimens. The thickness of the enamel during mineralization was calculated from data from SIMS.The thickness of the buccal enamel of primary incisors seemed to be fully developed between 3-4 months after birth, reaching a thickness of 350-400 microm.

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Dental Enamel / chemistry*
  • Elements*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incisor / chemistry
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Minerals / analysis*
  • Minerals / metabolism
  • Specimen Handling
  • Spectrometry, Mass, Secondary Ion
  • Tooth, Deciduous / chemistry*
  • Tooth, Deciduous / metabolism


  • Elements
  • Minerals