In many organisms, ranging from yeast to humans, mitochondria fuse and divide to change their morphology in response to a multitude of signals. During the past decade, work using yeast and mammalian cells has identified much of the machinery required for fusion and division, including the dynamin-related GTPases--mitofusins (Fzo1p in yeast) and OPA1 (Mgm1p in yeast) for fusion and Drp1 (Dnm1p) for division. However, the mechanisms by which cells regulate these dynamic processes have remained largely unknown. Recent studies have uncovered regulatory mechanisms that control the activity, assembly, distribution and stability of the key components for mitochondrial fusion and division. In this review, we discuss how mitochondrial dynamics are controlled and how these events are coordinated with cell growth, mitosis, apoptosis and human diseases.