Contemplating a role for titanium in organisms
Titanium is the ninth most abundant element in the Earth's crust and some organisms sequester it avidly, though no essential biological role has yet been recognized. This Minireview addresses how the properties of titanium, especially in an oxic aqueous environment, might make a biological role difficult to recognize. It further considers how new -omic technologies might overcome the limitations of the past and help to reveal a specific role for this metal. While studies with well established model organisms have their rightful place, organisms that are known avid binders or sequesterers of titanium should be promising places to investigate a biological role.