Molecular Basis of Heredity: Part 2. Genomes
Mitochondria are the power plants of cells: they provide cells with the chemical energy needed to perform the metabolic tasks associated with life. It is widely believed that mitochondria are the remnants of ancient energy-producing symbiotic bacterial cells that were assimilated into eukaryotic cells. Similarly, chloroplasts in green plants are believed to be remnants of photosynthetic bacteria.
The mitochondrial chromosome encodes 13 proteins, 2 rRNAs and 22 tRNAs. Mitochondria obtain many of their proteins from genes encoded in the nuclear genomes of cells. Nuclear encoded proteins are imported into the mitochondria after translation.
- Brandon, M. C., Lott, M. T., Nguyen, K. C., Spolim, S., Navathe, S. B., Baldi, P. & Wallace, D. C. (2004). MITOMAP: a human mitochondrial genome database--2004 update. Nucleic Acids Research 33 (Database Issue):D611-613, 2005. Retrieved from http://www.mitomap.org
- Lewin, B. (2004). Genes VIII. Pearson Prentice Hall.
- Hicks. J. M. Electron micrograph of mitochondria. Director of Surgical and Ultrastructual Pathology, Texas Children’s Hospital and Department of Pathology, Baylor College of Medicine.
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