Mitochondrial dynamics and aging: Mitochondrial interaction preventing individuals from expression of respiratory deficiency caused by mutant mtDNA

Biochim Biophys Acta. May-Jun 2006;1763(5-6):473-81. doi: 10.1016/j.bbamcr.2006.03.001. Epub 2006 Mar 24.


In mammalian cells, there is an extensive and continuous exchange of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and its products between mitochondria. This mitochondrial complementation prevents individuals from expression of respiration deficiency caused by mutant mtDNAs. Thus, the presence of mitochondrial complementation does not support the generally accepted mitochondrial theory of aging, which proposes that accumulation of somatic mutations in mtDNA is responsible for age-associated mitochondrial dysfunction. Moreover, the presence of mitochondrial complementation enables gene therapy for mitochondrial diseases using nuclear transplantation of zygotes.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aging / genetics*
  • Aging / metabolism*
  • Aging / pathology
  • Animals
  • DNA, Mitochondrial / genetics*
  • Genetic Therapy
  • Humans
  • Mitochondria / genetics
  • Mitochondria / metabolism*
  • Mitochondria / pathology*
  • Mitochondrial Diseases / genetics*
  • Mitochondrial Diseases / pathology*
  • Mitochondrial Diseases / therapy
  • Mutation / genetics*


  • DNA, Mitochondrial