Evolution of the hydrogenosome

FEMS Microbiol Lett. 1997 Oct 15;155(2):133-40. doi: 10.1016/s0378-1097(97)00333-9.


Since its discovery almost 25 years ago the enigmatic hydrogenosome, a redox organelle of anaerobic unicellular eukaryotes, has puzzled evolutionists as to its origin and function. Synthesis of recent molecular, physiological and morphological studies now favours the hypothesis that hydrogenosomes derived from a modification of pre-existing mitochondria, and argues against the previously held view that the hydrogenosome had a polyphyletic origin. These data provide evidence for a more ancient origin of mitochondria than hitherto thought.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Hydrogen / metabolism
  • Mitochondria / metabolism
  • Phylogeny
  • Trichomonas vaginalis / classification*
  • Trichomonas vaginalis / metabolism


  • Hydrogen