Importing mitochondrial proteins: Machineries and mechanisms

Agnieszka Chacinska, Carla M Koehler, Dusanka Milenkovic, Trevor James Lithgow, Nikolaus Pfanner

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

810 Citations (Scopus)


Most mitochondrial proteins are synthesized on cytosolic ribosomes and must be imported across one or both mitochondrial membranes. There is an amazingly versatile set of machineries and mechanisms, and at least four different pathways, for the importing and sorting of mitochondrial precursor proteins. The translocases that catalyze these processes are highly dynamic machines driven by the membrane potential, ATP, or redox reactions, and they cooperate with molecular chaperones and assembly complexes to direct mitochondrial proteins to their correct destinations. Here, we discuss recent insights into the importing and sorting of mitochondrial proteins and their contributions to mitochondrial biogenesis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)628 - 644
Number of pages17
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2009

Cite this