Protein turnover rates in plant mitochondria

Mitochondrion. 2020 Jul:53:57-65. doi: 10.1016/j.mito.2020.04.011. Epub 2020 May 5.


Plant mitochondria operate as the powerhouses for cellular energy production by using the combined functions of both imported and organelle-synthesised proteins. Homeostasis of mitochondrial proteins is controlled by both synthesis and degradation processes which together define protein turnover in this organelle. Better understanding of plant mitochondrial protein turnover will provide information on protein quality control inside these organelles and its importance for proper function and regulation of mitochondrial machinery. This review discusses methods used for measurement of turnover rates of plant mitochondrial proteins and presents our current understanding of these rates for key mitochondrial proteins and protein complexes. The assembly and maintenance of mitochondrial OXPHOS complexes, in particular Complexes I and V, will be discussed in detail based on the evidence for differential protein turnover rates of the same protein subunits in different mitochondrial fractions. The impact of the loss of specific plant mitochondrial proteases on proteolysis events and rates of mitochondrial protein turnover will be highlighted. The challenges and future directions for investigation of plant mitochondrial protein turnover are also discussed.

Keywords: Plant mitochondria; Proteases; Protein complex assembly; Protein turnover; Proteostasis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Homeostasis
  • Mitochondria / metabolism*
  • Mitochondrial Proteins / chemistry
  • Mitochondrial Proteins / metabolism*
  • Oxidative Phosphorylation
  • Plant Proteins / chemistry
  • Plant Proteins / metabolism
  • Plants / metabolism*
  • Proteolysis


  • Mitochondrial Proteins
  • Plant Proteins