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Exp Gerontol. 2001 Jul;36(7):957-68.

Oxidative damage to mitochondria and aging.

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Department of Physiology, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, and GRECC, South Texas Veterans Health Care System, San Antonio, TX 78284-7756, USA.


Oxidative damage has been implicated to be a major factor in the decline in physiologic function that occurs during the aging process. Because mitochondria are a primary site of generation of reactive oxygen species, they have become a major focus of research in this area. Increased oxidative damage to mitochondrial proteins, lipid and DNA has been reported to occur with age in several tissues in a variety of organisms. Decreased activity of electron transport chain complexes and increased release of reactive oxygen species from the mitochondria with age suggest that alterations in mitochondrial function occur with age as a consequence of increased oxidative damage. In addition, age-related alterations in the mitochondrial pathway of apoptosis, which could have profound affects on the physiological function of a tissue, could arise from oxidative damage to mitochondria. Alterations in mitochondrial turnover with age could also contribute to an increase in the number of dysfunctional mitochondria with age.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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