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I. Biologic Mineralisation: Paleoarchives, natural functional materials and bacterial mineralisation processes

Erika Griesshaber & Wolfgang Schmahl, LMU München & GeoBioCenter

This session will highlight the interplay of organic and inorganic components in the diverse mineralized materials formed under biologic control. We would like to bring together a broad scientific community involved in biomineralisation and bio-induced mineralization studies. The formation and dissolution of these hybrid organic/inorganic composits is an important factor in global geochemical budgets, and the conserved fossil biomineral record still forms the essential archive for evolutionary and paleoclimatic studies. Evolutionary adaptations of biomineral structures have also lead to solutions for natural functional materials with distinct hierarchical architectures and spectacular material properties. Research over the last years has revealed the important role of metabolic control of isotopic and trace element composition of biominerals, the so called vital effect. The organic components direct crystal nucleation, they act as templates for mineral morphology and form a matrix for the entire hierarchical structure. New tools of molecular biology are now employed to study the rates and patterns of evolution, integrating genetic data from the living organisms and the fossil record.

Keynote speaker: Prof. Dr. Martin Lee, Department of Geographical and Earth Sciences, University of Glasgow, U.K, Prof. Dr. A. Kappler, Universität Tübingen