Invading microbes occupy the host cytosol and take up nutrients on which host organelles are also dependent. Thus, host organelles are poised to interact with intracellular microbes. Despite the essential role of host mitochondria in cellular metabolic homeostasis and in mediating cellular responses to microbial infection, we know little of how these organelles interact with intracellular pathogens, and how such interactions affect disease pathogenesis. Here, we give an overview of the different classes of physical and metabolic interactions reported to occur between mitochondria and eukaryotic pathogens. Investigating the underlying molecular mechanisms and functions of such interactions will reveal novel aspects of infection biology.
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