This study investigates the ability of boron nitride nanotubes (BNNTs) to induce apatite formation in a simulated body fluid environment for a period of 7, 14 and 28 days. BNNTs, when soaked in the simulated body fluid, are found to induce hydroxyapatite (HA) precipitation on their surface. The precipitation process has an initial incubation period of ∼ 4.6 days. The amount of HA precipitate increases gradually with the soaking time. High resolution TEM results indicated a hexagonal crystal structure of HA needles. No specific crystallographic orientation relationship is observed between BNNT and HA, which is due to the presence of a thin amorphous HA layer on the BNNT surface that disturbs a definite orientation relationship.