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Fungal Genet Biol. 2002 Jul;36(2):91-7.

Mitochondrial dynamics in filamentous fungi.

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Institut für Physiologische Chemie, Universität München, Butenandtstr. 5, 81377 Munich, Germany.


Mitochondria are essential organelles of eukaryotic cells. They grow continuously throughout the cell cycle and are inherited by daughter cells upon cell division. Inheritance of mitochondria and maintenance of mitochondrial distribution and morphology require active transport of the organelles along the cytoskeleton and depend on membrane fission and fusion events. Many of the molecular components and cellular mechanisms mediating these complex processes have been conserved during evolution across the borders of the fungal and animal kingdoms. During the past few decades, several constituents of the cellular machinery mediating mitochondrial behavior have been identified and functionally characterized. Here, we review the contributions of fungi, with special emphasis on the filamentous fungus Neurospora crassa, to our current understanding of mitochondrial morphogenesis and inheritance.

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