Mice deficient in the heart/muscle specific isoform of the adenine nucleotide translocator (ANT1) exhibit many of the hallmarks of human oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) disease, including a dramatic proliferation of skeletal muscle mitochondria. Because many of the genes necessary for mitochondrial biosynthesis, OXPHOS function, and response to OXPHOS disease might be expected to be up-regulated in the Ant1(-/-) mouse, we used differential display reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction techniques in an effort to identify these genes. 17 genes were identified as up-regulated in Ant1-deficient mice, and they fall into four categories: 1) nuclear and mitochondrial genes encoding OXPHOS components, 2) mitochondrial tRNA and rRNA genes, 3) genes involved in intermediary metabolism, and 4) an eclectic group of other genes. Among the latter genes, we identified the gene encoding anti-apoptotic Mcl-1, the Skd3 gene, and the WS-3 gene, which were previously unknown to be related to mitochondrial function. These results indicate that identification of genes up-regulated in the skeletal muscle of the Ant1-deficient mouse provides a novel method for identifying mammalian genes required for mitochondrial biogenesis.