(Middle English, from Old French mineral from Middle Latin minerale, "pertaining to mines", from minera, "mine")
2. The production of partly or wholly mineralized internal or external structures by living organisms.
Organisms use a wide variety of minerals to make their skeletons, including silica, apatite, and several polymorphs of carbonate, in particular aragonite and calcite.
It is unclear, however, why different taxa evolved to use one mineral rather than another. Lineages rarely switched their mineralogy after acquiring skeletons, suggesting that, for most taxa, ambient seawater chemistry does not strongly influence skeletal mineralogy.
Mineralization of most animal skeletons is biologically controlled, occurring in an environment isolated from seawater. As a result, seawater chemistry does not have a direct influence on the mineralogy of most animal skeletons the way it does for biomineralizers that induce mineralization directly from seawater.
2. The loss, deprivation, or removal of minerals or mineral salts from the body; especially, through disease, as with the loss of calcium from bones or teeth.
3. Excessive elimination of mineral or inorganic salts; as in, pulmonary tuberculosis, cancer, and osteomalacia.
2. To lose mineral content or to become demineralized.
2. Any substance of nonbiologic origin, including inorganic constituents of living matter.
The meaning is extended to include petroleum, as its biologic origin is only remote.
2. Material in coal that is not formed from decomposed plant products; that is, minerals that were present in the original plant materials or that were assimilated from extraneous sources; such as, sediments and mineralized water.
Clay, pyrite, and calcite are minerals often present in coal.
2. A process in vertebrates in which the mineral component of bone tissue increases in content and/or density.
Examples of mineralization include the deposition of salts in living organisms; such as, calcium phosphate in bone formation, and the complete oxidation of organic compounds, so that their carbon and hydrogen are oxidized to carbon dioxide and water, and other elements present to inorganic oxidation products, whose amounts may be measured comparatively easily.
Mineralocorticoids ; such as aldosterone and deoxycorticosterone, control salt and water balance by their action on the kidneys.
2. Anyone who is devoted to the study of minerals.
3. A scientist trained in mineralogy.
2. A branch of geology that studies minerals; their structure and properties, and the ways of distinguishing them.
3. A profile of an area's mineral deposits.
2. A metallic element in liquid form; such as, mercury at ordinary temperatures.
2. The restoring of minerals to demineralized structures or substances.
3. The restoration of mineral elements; such as, of calcium salts to bones or teeth.