The infrared and Raman spectroscopy of bone and teeth tissues are reviewed. Characteristic spectra are obtained for both the mineral and protein components of these tissues. Vibrational spectroscopy is used to study the mineralization process, to define the chemical structure changes accompanying bone diseases, and to characterize interactions between prosthetic implants and tissues. Microspectroscopy allows acquisition of spatially resolved spectra, with micron scale resolution. Recently developed imaging modalities allow tissue imaging with chemical composition contrast. © 2000 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers.