Mitochondrial morphology and distribution in mammalian cells

Ann E. Frazier, Clement Kiu, Diana Stojanovski, Nicholas J. Hoogenraad, Michael T. Ryan

Research output: Contribution to journalShort SurveyOtherpeer-review

102 Citations (Scopus)


It is now appreciated that mitochondria form tubular networks that adapt to the requirements of the cell by undergoing changes in their shape through fission and fusion. Proper mitochondrial distribution also appears to be required for ATP delivery and calcium regulation, and, in some cases, for cell development. While we now realise the great importance of mitochondria for the cell, we are only beginning to work out how these organelles undergo the drastic morphological changes that are essential for cellular function. Of the few known components involved in shaping mitochondria, some have been found to be essential to life and their gene mutations are linked to neurological disorders, while others appear to be recruited in the activation of cell death pathways. Here we review our current understanding of the functions of the main players involved in mitochondrial fission, fusion and distribution in mammalian cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1551-1558
Number of pages8
JournalBiological Chemistry
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Apoptosis
  • Cytoskeleton
  • Fission
  • Fusion
  • Mitochondria

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