Why mitochondria must fuse to maintain their genome integrity.


SIGNIFICANCE The maintenance of mitochondrial genome integrity is a major challenge for cells to sustain energy production by respiration. RECENT ADVANCES Recently, mitochondrial membrane dynamics emerged as a key process contributing to prevent mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) alterations. Indeed, both fundamental and clinical data suggest that disruption of mitochondrial fusion, related to mutations in the OPA1, MFN2, PINK1, and PARK2 genes, leads to the accumulation of mutations in the mitochondrial genome. CRITICAL ISSUES We discuss here the possibility that mitochondrial fusion acts as a direct mechanism to prevent the generation of altered mtDNA and to eliminate mutated deleterious genomes either by trans-complementation or by mitophagy. FUTURE DIRECTIONS Finally, we conclude this review with a short evolutionary comparison between the mechanisms involved in mitochondrial and bacterial modes of genome distribution and plasticity, highlighting possible common conserved processes required for the maintenance of their genome integrity, which should inspire our future investigations.

DOI: 10.1089/ars.2012.4800

Cite this paper

@article{Vidoni2013WhyMM, title={Why mitochondria must fuse to maintain their genome integrity.}, author={Sara Vidoni and Claudia Zanna and Michela Rugolo and Emmanuelle Sarzi and Guy Lenaers}, journal={Antioxidants & redox signaling}, year={2013}, volume={19 4}, pages={379-88} }