Which mitochondria are inherited across generations? Are transmitted mitochondria functionally silenced to preserve the integrity of their genetic information, or rather are those mitochondria with the highest levels of function (as indicated by membrane potential Delta-psi-m) preferentially transmitted? Based on observations of the unusual system of doubly uniparental inheritance of mitochondria and of the common strictly maternal inheritance mode, I formulate a general hypothesis to explain which mitochondria reach the primordial germ cells (PGCs), and how this happens. Several studies indicate that mitochondrial movements are driven by microtubules and that mitochondria with high Delta-psi-m are preferentially transported. This can be applied also to the mitochondria that eventually populate embryonic PGCs, so I propose that Delta-psi-m may be a trait that allows for the preferential transmission of the most active (and healthy) mitochondria. The topics discussed here are fundamental in cell biology and genetics but remain controversial and a subject of heated debate; I propose an explanation for how a Delta-psi-m-dependent mechanism can cause the observed differences in mitochondrial transmission.

Milani, L. (2015). Mitochondrial membrane potential: a trait involved in organelle inheritance?. BIOLOGY LETTERS, 11(10), 1-4 [10.1098/rsbl.2015.0732].

Mitochondrial membrane potential: a trait involved in organelle inheritance?

MILANI, LILIANA
2015

Abstract

Which mitochondria are inherited across generations? Are transmitted mitochondria functionally silenced to preserve the integrity of their genetic information, or rather are those mitochondria with the highest levels of function (as indicated by membrane potential Delta-psi-m) preferentially transmitted? Based on observations of the unusual system of doubly uniparental inheritance of mitochondria and of the common strictly maternal inheritance mode, I formulate a general hypothesis to explain which mitochondria reach the primordial germ cells (PGCs), and how this happens. Several studies indicate that mitochondrial movements are driven by microtubules and that mitochondria with high Delta-psi-m are preferentially transported. This can be applied also to the mitochondria that eventually populate embryonic PGCs, so I propose that Delta-psi-m may be a trait that allows for the preferential transmission of the most active (and healthy) mitochondria. The topics discussed here are fundamental in cell biology and genetics but remain controversial and a subject of heated debate; I propose an explanation for how a Delta-psi-m-dependent mechanism can cause the observed differences in mitochondrial transmission.
2015
Milani, L. (2015). Mitochondrial membrane potential: a trait involved in organelle inheritance?. BIOLOGY LETTERS, 11(10), 1-4 [10.1098/rsbl.2015.0732].
Milani, Liliana
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11585/526767
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