The Calcium


Face-centered cubic crystal structure for calcium
Face-centered cubic crystal structure for calcium

Source: By Original PNGs by Daniel Mayer and DrBob, traced in Inkscape by User:Stannered – Cubic, face-centered.png: Lattice face centered cubic.svg:, CC BY-SA 3.0,

OpenStax Anatomy and Physiology

About two pounds of calcium in your body are bound up in bone, which provides to the bone and serves as a mineral reserve for calcium and its salts for the rest of the tissues. Teeth also have a high concentration of calcium within them. A little more than one-half of blood calcium is bound to proteins, leaving the rest in its ionized form. Calcium ions, Ca2+, are necessary for muscle contraction, enzyme activity, and blood coagulation. In addition, calcium helps to stabilize cell membranes and is essential for the release of neurotransmitters from neurons and of hormones from endocrine glands.

Calcium is absorbed through the intestines under the influence of activated . A deficiency of vitamin D leads to a decrease in absorbed calcium and, eventually, a depletion of calcium stores from the skeletal system, potentially leading to rickets in children and osteomalacia in adults, contributing to .

, or abnormally low calcium blood levels, is seen in hypoparathyroidism, which may follow the removal of the thyroid gland, because the four nodules of the parathyroid gland are embedded in it. , or abnormally high calcium blood levels, is seen in primary hyperparathyroidism. Some malignancies may also result in hypercalcemia.


Betts, J. G., Young, K. A., Wise, J. A., Johnson, E., Poe, B., Kruse, D. H., … DeSaix, P. (n.d.). Anatomy and Physiology. Houston, Texas: OpenStax. Access for free at:


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