Phosphorus is an element of vital importance in the growth and health of plants and animals. As hydroxyapatite, phosphorus is an important constituent of the teeth and of the bones. As triphosphate adenosin (ATP), or other organic phosphates, the element has an indispensable role in biochemical processes. All the biological mechanisms that use phosphorus use it as orthophosphate form or, alternatively, as polyphosphate, which by hydrolysis, becomes orthophosphate. Examples of these processes are photosynthesis, fermentation, metabolism, etc.

In the living animals, phosphorus is also a constituent element of the nervous tissues as well as of the cellular plasma.