Calcium Phosphate - Ca3(PO4)2

What is Calcium Phosphate?

Calcium phosphate is a calcium salt of phosphoric acid with a chemical formula Ca3(PO4)2. It is also known as Calcium phosphate tribasic or Tricalcium Phosphate.

Calcium phosphate appears as a white amorphous or crystalline powder that is odourless and tasteless. It is insoluble in ethanol, acetic acid but soluble in dilute nitric acid and hydrochloric acid. It slightly dissolves in water. It is found in bones, milk, teeth, and ground.

Apatite is a mineral rock which is an impure and complex form of calcium phosphate which produces tribasic calcium phosphate. An apatite is a form of phosphorite which contains calcium phosphate mixed with other compounds.

Calcium phosphates are important materials in biology, geology, industry , medicine and dentistry. Its formation, functions and applications depend on its structure , composition, solubility and stability.

Preparation of Calcium Phosphate

It can also be produced by reacting phosphoric acid (H3PO4) with solid calcium hydroxide Ca(OH)2

Ca(OH)2+H3PO4Ca3(PO4)2+H2O (unbalanced)

3Ca(OH)2+2H3PO4Ca3(PO4)2+6H2O (balanced equation)

Dibasic calcium phosphate can be produced in the former of these reactions by using an aqueous solution of calcium hydroxide. Monobasic calcium phosphate is obtained by adding excess phosphoric acid to either a dibasic solution or a tribasic calcium phosphate solution and letting the solution to evaporate.

Properties of Calcium Phosphate – Ca3(PO4)2

Ca3(PO4)2 Calcium phosphate
Molecular Weight/ Molar Mass 136.06 to 310.20 g/mol
Density (tribasic) 3.14 g/cm³
Boiling Point Decomposes
Melting Point (tribasic) 1670°C

Calcium Phosphate Solubility – Ca3(PO4)2

Solubility is one of the most important characteristics of calcium phosphate salts. It is solubility that defines the course of several reactions involving calcium phosphates such as absorption, precipitation, hydrolysis and phase transformation. Calcium phosphate solubility also plays a major role in biological processes including hard tissue formation and resorption as well as pathological calcification.

Calcium phosphate-based bone graft replacements (mostly tricalcium phosphate or hydroxyapatite) are bioceramics that have the greatest resemblance to bone minerals. This is what makes calcium phosphate excellent biocompatibility, biodegradability and osteoconductivity.

Calcium is a mineral found naturally in food. Calcium is essential for many normal functions of the body, in particular bone formation and maintenance. Calcium can also bind to other minerals (such as phosphate) and help to extract them from the body. Calcium phosphate is used to prevent and treat calcium deficiencies. Calcium phosphate may also be used for purposes not specified in this drug guide.

Structure of Ca3(PO4)2

Structure of Calcium Phosphate

Structure of a Calcium Phosphate Molecule

Uses of Calcium phosphate (Ca3(PO4)2)

  • Calcium phosphate is used as an antacid and dietary supplement in veterinary medicine.
  • It is used in medicine as calcium replenisher.
  • It is used as a buffer in food.
  • It is used stabilizer in plastics.
  • It is used in the manufacturing of milk glass.
  • It is used in the production of fertilizers.
  • It is used in the manufacture of luminescent materials.
  • It is used to clarify sugar syrups.
  • It is used in dental powders.

Occurrence of Calcium Phosphate

Calcium and phosphorus make up the bulk of animal mineral nutrient requirements (to fulfill both body tissue and milk needs), hence DCPD is a popular and commonly used animal supplement. Dicalcium Phosphate Dihydrate is also of concern as it is the most soluble of barely soluble calcium phosphate crystals, making it a good choice for rock phosphate dissolution tests. The fate of DCPD in the soil is rather temporary.

Mineral phosphorus is usually applied to soil in a water-soluble form, such as triple super phosphate or diammonium phosphate. As phosphorus dissolves a high concentration of solution P, precipitation reactions are preferred. Calcium phosphates are found in nature in many ways and are the primary minerals for the manufacture of phosphate fertilizers and for a variety of phosphorus compounds.

Solubility of Calcium Phosphates

Solubility is one of the most essential properties of calcium phosphate salts. It is solubility that defines the course of several reactions involving calcium phosphates such as absorption, precipitation, hydrolysis and phase transformation. Calcium phosphate solubility also plays a crucial role in biological processes including hard tissue development and resorption as well as pathological calcification.

Solubility is conventionally described as the quantity of a solid that can dissolve into a unit volume of solution. With calcium phosphates, this level also varies by many orders of magnitude, including variations in pH and concentrations of acids and bases, such as HCI and NaOH. Water-soluble calcium phosphate is derived from the skeletons of vertebrate animals. Water soluble calcium phosphate is an important material for plant growth and is commonly dispersed in the soil. Calcium phosphate is insoluble in water but soluble in acids: it is used in natural farming. Calcium phosphate may dissolve slightly in CO2-containing water.

Health Hazards Associated with Calcium Phosphate

When the toxic doses ingested become more than 2 g/kg unusual skin sensitization occurs. Inhaling it may cause chemical pneumonitis. Calcium phosphate is used in many products in biomedicine, but also in dentistry and cosmetics. In certain situations, it is found in nanoparticle form, either on purpose or after degradation or mechanical abrasion. Possible issues refer to the biological impact of these nanoparticles.

A thorough literature review shows that calcium phosphate nanoparticles, as such, do not have inherent toxicity, but may lead to an increase in intracellular calcium concentration following endosomal uptake and lysosomal degradation. However, cells are able to remove calcium from the cytoplasm within a few hours, unless very high doses of calcium phosphate are used.

The cytotoxicity observed in some cell culture studies , especially for unfunctionalized particles, is likely due to particle agglomeration and subsequent sedimentation on the cell layer, leading to a very high local concentration of particles, high absorption of particles, and subsequent cell death.

Calcium phosphate nanoparticles can reach the bloodstream by inhalation, but no harmful effects have been observed with the exception of extended exposure to high particle doses. Calcium phosphate nanoparticles within the body do not pose a risk because they are normally resorbed and destroyed by osteoclasts and macrophages.

Frequently Asked Questions – FAQs

What are the benefits of calcium phosphate?

It can be used to treat disorders caused by low levels of calcium such as bone loss (osteoporosis), weak bones (osteomalacia / rickets), reduced parathyroid gland function (hypoparathyroidism), and some muscle disease (latent tetanus).

Is calcium phosphate safe in food?

Calcium can make such drugs more difficult for your body to absorb. Calcium phosphate functions better when it’s taken with food. And ensure that you can take calcium phosphate safely, notify your doctor if you have any of the following conditions: a history of kidney stones.

How do you make calcium phosphate fertilizer?

Method of producing calcium phosphate fertilizer from a calcium-containing material, reactive with diluted phosphoric acid to create calcium phosphate fertilizer, calcium silicate and diluted phosphoric acid consisting of mixing the fine calcium-containing material with diluted phosphoric acid containing by weight of H3PO4 at least 30 to 40 per cent.

What is calcium phosphate used for?

Calcium is important for many normal body functions, especially bone formation and maintenance. Also, calcium can bind to other minerals (such as phosphate), and help remove them from the body. Calcium phosphate is used to avoid calcium shortages, and to treat them.

Is calcium phosphate soluble in water?

Calcium is important for many normal body functions, especially bone formation and maintenance. Also, calcium can bind to other minerals (such as phosphate), and help remove them from the body. Calcium phosphate is used to avoid calcium shortages, and to treat them.

What are the side effects of calcium phosphate?

Side effects of calcium phosphate
1. nausea and/or vomiting
2. Reduced appetite
3. Constipation,
4. Dry mouth or decreased hunger
5. Increases sweat.

What is the purpose of calcium phosphate?

Calcium is necessary for many normal functions of the body, in particular bone formation and maintenance. Calcium can also bind to other minerals (such as phosphate) and help to extract them from the body. Calcium phosphate is used to avoid and cure calcium deficiency.

What is the difference between calcium carbonate and calcium phosphate?

Calcium carbonate is typically the most constipating ingredient, but provides the highest amount of calcium and is the least expensive. Calcium phosphate does not cause gas or constipation, but is more volatile than calcium carbonate.

Is calcium phosphate better than calcium carbonate?

Calcium carbonate is generally the most constipating supplement, but contains the highest amount of calcium and is the least expensive. Calcium phosphate does not cause gas or constipation, but is more costly than calcium carbonate.

What type of calcium is best?

Calcium carbonate and calcium citrate are the optimal supplement forms. Calcium carbonate should be taken with food because it requires stomach acid to dissolve and absorb. Calcium carbonate has the most calcium per pill (40 per cent) so fewer pills are needed.

What type of calcium is best for osteopenia?

Calcium carbonate and calcium citrate are the two most widely used calcium products. Calcium carbonate supplements dissolve better in an acidic environment, so they should be taken with a meal. Calcium citrate supplements may be taken at any time because they do not require acid to dissolve.


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