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Fluorapatite crystal. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of an abnormally shaped fluorapatite, or calcium fluoride phosphate, crystal. Usually fluorapatite crystals form spheres. This crystal has been grown in the laboratory for research into the use of fluorapatite as an ingredient in toothpaste to treat sensitive teeth. The fluorapatite transfers fluoride ions to tooth enamel, which is a composite of collagen and hydroxyapatite (calcium phosphate), repairing any damage. Magnification: x2080 when printed at 10 centimetres wide.
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