This review provides a retrospective on the role of osmotic regulation in the process of eukaryogenesis. Specifically, it focuses on the adjustments which must have been made by the original colonizing α-proteobacteria that led to the evolution of modern mitochondria. We focus on the cations that are fundamentally involved in volume determination and cellular metabolism and define the transporter landscape in relation to these ions in mitochondria as we know today. We provide analysis on how the cations interplay and together maintain osmotic balance that allows for effective ATP synthesis in the organelle.
Keywords: cation transporters; evolution; metabolism; mitochondria; osmotic regulation.
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