From CellBiology


  • Greek, mito = thread; chondrion = granule
  • Located throughout cytoplasmic compartment
    • mitochondria have several membrane enclosed compartments
    • each compartment has different function
  • Ancient aerobic organisms in symbiosis (endosymbiosis)
  • present in all cells

Mitochondria fl.jpg 08lungtem.jpg

Welcome to the Matrix!

Mitochondrion is singular, Mitochondria is plural

Labeled Mitochondria Movie (1 frame/2 seconds)

Mitochondrial motility in cultured hippocampal neurons

LInks: Lecture - Mitochondria

Mitochondria Function

  • Energy production
    • Respiratory chain
  • Signaling
  • Apoptosis role
    • Programmed cell death

Mitochondria Structure

Mitochondrial membraneous compartments
Mitochondrion rat liver
  • Double membrane
  • outer membrane
  • intermembrane space
  • inner membrane
  • crista (plural, cristae)
    • originally considered specialized folds of the inner membrane
    • variable invaginations with narrow tubular connections to each other and by crista junctions to the peripheral region of inner membrane
  • matrix

Mitochondria Shape

  • Come in different shapes & sizes
  • Can rapidly change shape (minutes)

EM: Mitochondria EM: Mitochondria EM: Mitochondria Mitochondrial Morphology

Mitochodrial Movie

Mitochondria Location

  • cells with high energy requirements: Muscle, sperm tail, flagella
  • generally located where energy consumption is highest in the cell
  • Mitochondria (fibroblasts)
  • Mitochondria (sperm)
    • Packed around initial segment
    • Energy for sperm motility, microtubules (9+2)


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External Links

External Links Notice - The dynamic nature of the internet may mean that some of these listed links may no longer function. If the link no longer works search the web with the link text or name.

  • MitoSciences is a leading developer of mitochondrial antibodies and mitochondrial assays.