Stimulation of mitochondrial oxidative metabolism by Ca(2+) is now generally recognised as important for the control of cellular ATP homeostasis. Here, we review the mechanisms through which Ca(2+) regulates mitochondrial ATP synthesis. We focus on cardiac myocytes and pancreatic β-cells, where tight control of this process is likely to play an important role in the response to rapid changes in workload and to nutrient stimulation, respectively. We also describe a novel approach for imaging the Ca(2+)-dependent regulation of ATP levels dynamically in single cells.
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