The aim was to identify suspect collagen cross-links in dentine, eluting close to known cross-links in ion-exchange HPLC. Bovine tooth roots as source of dentine were powdered, demineralised, reduced, and acid-hydrolysed. Cross-linking amino acids were isolated from the acid hydrolysate by size exclusion, adsorption, and sequential ion exchange chromatography. In addition to dihydroxylysinonorleucine and hydroxylysylpyridinoline, an unknown cross-link was isolated (V-2). The ultraviolet, mass, and nuclear magnetic resonance spectra support the proposed structure of V-2, a trimeric amino acid with a pyrroleninone nucleus. Copyright (C) 1998 Elsevier Science B.V.