The noncollagenous interfibrillar interface in bone provides the critical function of transferring loads among collagen fibrils and their bundles, with adhesive mechanisms at this site thus significantly contributing to the mechanical properties of bone. Motivated by the experimental observations and hypotheses, a computational study is presented to elucidate the critical roles of two major proteins at the nanoscale interfibrillar interface, that is, osteopontin (OPN) and osteocalcin (OC) in bone. This study reveals the extremely high interfacial toughness of the OPN/OC composite. The previously proposed hypothesis of sacrificial bonds in the extracellular organic matrix is tested, and the remarkable mechanical properties of the nanoscale bone interface are attributed to the collaborative interactions between the OPN and OC proteins.
- interfacial shear toughness
- noncollagenous interfibrillar interface
- sacrificial bond
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Materials Science