SEM observations and electron microprobe analyses have shown that the microstructure and chemical composition of a Plio-pleistocene bovid bone (Humpata Plateau, Angola) are well preserved. However, infrared spectroscopy spectra exhibit clear differences between Recent and fossil samples. Organic bands weaken relative to mineral ones in the fossil, whereas cristallinity rate and CO3/PO4 ratio increase. DRIFT spectra carried on the extracted organic matrices demonstrate the presence of proteic and sugar contents in the fossil bone, but the composition of the fossil organic matrices are modified by diagenetic processes.
Angola, Bovidae, infrared spectroscopy, sugar