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Appendix B - Properties of teeth and potential foods

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  04 August 2010

Peter W. Lucas
Affiliation:
The University of Hong Kong
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Summary

This appendix consists of tables listing properties mentioned in the text. As far as mechanical property measurements go, they are but a selection of those available in the literature. While some of the property values represent many years of work by investigators, others are nothing more than preliminary estimates. Where there has been a choice, I have opted for the most recent summary because some older work is probably more subject to variability due to state of preservation. Teeth provide an example. It is now established that storing teeth in deionized water loses mineral, producing a 20–30% decline in hardness inside a day (Habelitz et al., 2002). This means that it is certain that some hardness values quoted in the literature are too low. Estimates for other properties might inadvertently have been elevated: e.g. antler, which is lower in modulus and strength than limb bone, is higher in toughness (Currey & Brear, 1992), due to a slight reduction in its mineral content. Teeth extruding from the mouth may generally have lower mineralization, e.g. elephant ivory versus human dentine (Rajaram, 1986), and are undoubtedly drier. Though the toughness of ivory is unknown, a lot of fibrillar pull-out at fracture seems to imply higher toughness than that of human dentine (Rajaram, 1986).

Type
Chapter
Information
Dental Functional Morphology
How Teeth Work
, pp. 283 - 291
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2004

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