Reactive oxygen species (ROS) have been implicated in cyclosporin A (CsA) nephrotoxicity. As mitochondria are one of the main sources of ROS in cells, we evaluated the role of CsA in mitochondrial structure and function in LLC-PK1 cells. We incubated cells with CsA 1 microM for 24 hours and studies were performed with flow citometry and confocal microscopy. We studied mitochondrial NAD(P)H content, superoxide anion (O2.-) production (MitoSOX Red), oxidation of cardiolipin of inner mitochondrial membrane (NAO) and mitochondrial membrane potential (DIOC2(3)). Also we analyzed the intracellular ROS synthesis (H2DCF-DA) and reduced glutation (GSH) of cells. Our results showed that CsA decreased NAD(P)H and membrane potential, and increased O2.- in mitochondria. CsA also provoked oxidation of cardiolipin. Furthermore, CsA increased intracellular ROS production and decreased GSH content. These results suggest that CsA has crucial effects in mitochondria. CsA modified mitochondrial physiology through the decrease of antioxidant mitochondrial compounds as NAD(P)H and the dissipation of mitochondrial membrane potential and increase of oxidants as O2.-. Also, CsA alters lipidic structure of inner mitochondrial membrane through the oxidation of cardiolipin. These effects trigger a chain of events that favour intracellular synthesis of ROS and depletion of GSH that can compromise cellular viability. Nephrotoxic cellular effects of CsA can be explained, at least in part, through its influence on mitochondrial functionalism.