Calcification in human arterial disease and geological specimens: The nannobacterial (nanoparticle) link
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The biogenicity of calcium - phosphate - precipitating nannobacteria (nanobacteria, self - replicating nanoparticles) has been supported by researchers: the tiny cells (30 - 70 nm in diameter) reproduce in cultures, show cell walls in TEM, and react positively for DNA and immunostain. The recently documented cells bear remarkable resemblances to those found earlier in geologic settings such as hot springs, weathered volcanic rocks, travertines, sandstones, soils, and even a Martian meteorite. In this paper we focus on the similarities of the nannobacterial morphologies found in the biologic and geologic settings, as documented by high resolution SEM. In both settings nannobacteria occur as isolated cells, as chains or sheets of phosphatized cells, finally to form hard blocky masses of hydroxyapatite.