BBA - Molecular Cell Research (v.1763, #5-6)

Mitochondrial dynamics in cell life and death by Benedikt Westermann; Luca Scorrano (413).

Mitochondrial morphology and protein import—A tight connection? by Diana Stojanovski; Michael Rissler; Nikolaus Pfanner; Chris Meisinger (414-421).
Although the field of mitochondrial protein import and assembly may have initially been viewed as a completely distinct area of investigation to that of mitochondrial morphology and dynamics, recent findings have noted a clear influence on organelle morphology by perturbations in protein import pathways. This review aims to provide an overview of the mitochondrial import machinery in context of the recent link between translocation components and organelle structure, in addition to conferring the questions and challenges that have surfaced due to these observations.
Keywords: Mitochondria; Protein import; Protein assembly; Saccharomyces cerevisiae;

Mitochondrial shaping cuts by Mafalda Escobar-Henriques; Thomas Langer (422-429).
A broad range of cellular processes are regulated by proteolytic events. Proteolysis has now also been established to control mitochondrial morphology which results from the balanced action of fusion and fission. Two out of three known core components of the mitochondrial fusion machinery are under proteolytic control. The GTPase Fzo1 in the outer membrane of mitochondria is degraded along two independent proteolytic pathways. One controls mitochondrial fusion in vegetatively growing cells, the other one acts upon mating factor-induced cell cycle arrest. Fusion also depends on proteolytic processing of the GTPase Mgm1 by the rhomboid protease Pcp1 in the inner membrane of mitochondria. Functional links of AAA proteases or other proteolytic components to mitochondrial dynamics are just emerging. This review summarises the current understanding of regulatory roles of proteolytic processes for mitochondrial plasticity.
Keywords: Mitochondria; Proteolysis; Fusion; AAA proteases; Rhomboid; Ubiquitin-proteasome;

Plant mitochondrial dynamics by David C. Logan (430-441).
Higher plant mitochondria are dynamic, pleomorphic organelles. The higher plant chondriome (all mitochondria in a cell collectively) is typically composed of numerous, physically discrete, mitochondria. However, frequent inter-mitochondrial fusion, enabling the mixing and recombination of mtDNA, ensures that the higher plant chondriome functions, at least genetically, as a discontinuous whole. Nothing is known about the genes controlling mitochondrial fusion in plants; there are no plant homologues of most of the genes known to be involved in fusion in other organisms. In contrast, the mitochondrial fission apparatus is generally conserved. Higher plant mitochondria use dynamin-like and Fis-type proteins for division; like yeast and animals, higher plants have lost the mitochondrial-specific form of the prokaryote-derived protein, FtsZ. In addition to being providers of energy for life, mitochondria provide a trigger for death. The role of mitochondrial dynamics in the initiation and promulgation of cell death is conserved in higher plants although there are specific differences in the genes and mechanisms involved relative to other higher eukaryotes.
Keywords: Cytoskeleton; Dynamin; FtsZ; Matrixules; Mitochondrial dynamics; Morphology; Mitochondrial fission; Mitochondrial fusion; Mitochondrial permeability transition; Programmed cell death;

Mitochondrial dynamics and Ca2+ signaling by G. Szabadkai; A.M. Simoni; K. Bianchi; D. De Stefani; S. Leo; M.R. Wieckowski; R. Rizzuto (442-449).
Recent data shed light on two novel aspects of the mitochondria–Ca2+ liaison. First, it was extensively investigated how Ca2+ handling is controlled by mitochondrial shape, and positioning; a playground also of cell death and survival regulation. On the other hand, significant progress has been made to explore how intra- and near-mitochondrial Ca2+ signals modify mitochondrial morphology and cellular distribution. Here, we shortly summarize these advances and provide a model of Ca2+–mitochondria interactions.
Keywords: Mitochondria; Morphology; Ca2+; Drp-1; GTPase; Cell death;

Interactions of mitochondria with the actin cytoskeleton by Istvan R. Boldogh; Liza A. Pon (450-462).
Interactions between mitochondria and the cytoskeleton are essential for normal mitochondrial morphology, motility and distribution. While microtubules and their motors have been established as important factors for mitochondrial transport, emerging evidence indicates that mitochondria interact with the actin cytoskeleton in many cell types. In certain fungi, such as the budding yeast and Aspergillus, or in plant cells mitochondrial motility is largely actin-based. Even in systems such as neurons, where microtubules are the primary means of long-distance mitochondrial transport, the actin cytoskeleton is required for short-distance mitochondrial movements and for immobilization of the organelle at the cell cortex. The actin cytoskeleton is also involved in the immobilization of mitochondria at the cortex in cultured tobacco cells and in budding yeast. While the exact nature of these immobilizations is not known, they may be important for retaining mitochondria at sites of high ATP utilization or at other cellular locations where they are needed. Recent findings also indicate that mutations in actin or actin-binding proteins can influence mitochondrial pathways leading to cell death. Thus, mitochondria–actin interactions contribute to apoptosis.
Keywords: Mitochondria; Actin; Apoptosis;

Eukaryotic cells contain numerous copies of the mitochondrial genome (from 50 to 100 copies in the budding yeast to some thousands in humans) that localize to numerous intramitochondrial nucleoprotein complexes called nucleoids. The transmission of mitochondrial DNA differs significantly from that of nuclear genomes and depends on the number, molecular composition and dynamic properties of nucleoids and on the organization and dynamics of the mitochondrial compartment. While the localization, dynamics and protein composition of mitochondrial DNA nucleoids begin to be described, we are far from knowing all mechanisms and molecules mediating and/or regulating these processes. Here, we review our current knowledge on vertebrate nucleoids and discuss similarities and differences to nucleoids of other eukaryots.
Keywords: Mitochondrial DNA; Mitochondrial nucleoid; Mitochondrial genetics;

In mammalian cells, there is an extensive and continuous exchange of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and its products between mitochondria. This mitochondrial complementation prevents individuals from expression of respiration deficiency caused by mutant mtDNAs. Thus, the presence of mitochondrial complementation does not support the generally accepted mitochondrial theory of aging, which proposes that accumulation of somatic mutations in mtDNA is responsible for age-associated mitochondrial dysfunction. Moreover, the presence of mitochondrial complementation enables gene therapy for mitochondrial diseases using nuclear transplantation of zygotes.
Keywords: Mitochondrial theory of aging; Mitochondrial complementation; Mito-mice; mtDNA recombination; Gene therapy; Nuclear transplantation;

Molecular mechanism of mitochondrial membrane fusion by Erik E. Griffin; Scott A. Detmer; David C. Chan (482-489).
Mitochondrial fusion requires coordinated fusion of the outer and inner membranes. This process leads to exchange of contents, controls the shape of mitochondria, and is important for mitochondrial function. Two types of mitochondrial GTPases are essential for mitochondrial fusion. On the outer membrane, the fuzzy onions/mitofusin proteins form complexes in trans that mediate homotypic physical interactions between adjacent mitochondria and are likely directly involved in outer membrane fusion. Associated with the inner membrane, the OPA1 dynamin-family GTPase maintains membrane structure and is a good candidate for mediating inner membrane fusion. In yeast, Ugo1p binds to both of these GTPases to form a fusion complex, although a related protein has yet to be found in mammals. An understanding of the molecular mechanism of fusion may have implications for Charcot–Marie–Tooth subtype 2A and autosomal dominant optic atrophy, neurodegenerative diseases caused by mutations in Mfn2 and OPA1.
Keywords: Membrane fusion; Mitochondrial dynamics; Mitochondrial fusion; GTPase; Organelles;

Mitochondria are highly dynamic organelles exhibiting an elaborate morphology and fine structure. Fusion and fission processes contribute to the maintenance and dynamics of mitochondrial morphology. The Mitofusins, a class of evolutionary conserved GTPases of the mitochondrial outer membrane, are essential for the controlled fusion of mitochondrial membranes. Genetic and biochemical data propose a model in which functional domains, such as the GTPase domain and the C-terminally located coiled coil structure, act in an orchestrated manner to coordinate the tethering and mitochondrial outer membrane fusion. In addition, recent reports shed new light on the physiological importance of Mitofusin function suggesting a role in mitochondrial metabolism, apoptosis as well as cellular signalling. Mutations identified in the human Mfn2 gene from patients with the peripheral neuropathy Charcot–Marie–Tooth Type 2A invoke a direct correlation between mitochondrial morphology and function.
Keywords: Mitochondria; CMT2A; Fission; Apoptosis; Bioenergetics; Neurodegeneration;

Mitochondrial dynamics and disease, OPA1 by Aurélien Olichon; Emmanuelle Guillou; Cécile Delettre; Thomas Landes; Laetitia Arnauné-Pelloquin; Laurent J. Emorine; Valérie Mils; Marlène Daloyau; Christian Hamel; Patrizia Amati-Bonneau; Dominique Bonneau; Pascal Reynier; Guy Lenaers; Pascale Belenguer (500-509).
The mitochondria are dynamic organelles that constantly fuse and divide. An equilibrium between fusion and fission controls the morphology of the mitochondria, which appear as dots or elongated tubules depending the prevailing force. Characterization of the components of the fission and fusion machineries has progressed considerably, and the emerging question now is what role mitochondrial dynamics play in mitochondrial and cellular functions. Its importance has been highlighted by the discovery that two human diseases are caused by mutations in the two mitochondrial pro-fusion genes, MFN2 and OPA1. This review will focus on data concerning the function of OPA1, mutations in which cause optic atrophy, with respect to the underlying pathophysiological processes.
Keywords: Mitochondria; Optic atrophy; Dynamin; Apoptosis; OPA1;

Structure, function and evolution of the mitochondrial division apparatus by Tsuneyoshi Kuroiwa; Keiji Nishida; Yamato Yoshida; Takayuki Fujiwara; Toshiyuki Mori; Haruko Kuroiwa; Osami Misumi (510-521).
Mitochondria are derived from free-living α-proteobacteria that were engulfed by eukaryotic host cells through the process of endosymbiosis, and therefore have their own DNA which is organized using basic proteins to form organelle nuclei (nucleoids). Mitochondria divide and are split amongst the daughter cells during cell proliferation. Their division can be separated into two main events: division of the mitochondrial nuclei and division of the matrix (the so-called mitochondrial division, or mitochondriokinesis). In this review, we first focus on the cytogenetical relationships between mitochondrial nuclear division and mitochondriokinesis. Mitochondriokinesis occurs after mitochondrial nuclear division, similar to bacterial cytokinesis. We then describe the fine structure and dynamics of the mitochondrial division ring (MD ring) as a basic morphological background for mitochondriokinesis. Electron microscopy studies first identified a small electron-dense MD ring in the cytoplasm at the constriction sites of dividing mitochondria in the slime mold Physarum polycephalum, and then two large MD rings (with outer cytoplasmic and inner matrix sides) in the red alga Cyanidioschyzon merolae. Now MD rings have been found in all eukaryotes. In the third section, we describe the relationships between the MD ring and the FtsZ ring descended from ancestral bacteria. Other than the GTPase, FtsZ, mitochondria have lost most of the proteins required for bacterial cytokinesis as a consequence of endosymbiosis. The FtsZ protein forms an electron transparent ring (FtsZ or Z ring) in the matrix inside the inner MD ring. For the fourth section, we describe the dynamic association between the outer MD ring with a ring composed of the eukaryote-specific GTPase dynamin. Recent studies have revealed that eukaryote-specific GTPase dynamins form an electron transparent ring between the outer membrane and the MD ring. Thus, mitochondriokinesis is thought to be controlled by a mitochondrial division (MD) apparatus including a dynamic trio, namely the FtsZ, MD and dynamin rings, which consist of a chimera of rings from bacteria and eukaryotes in primitive organisms. Since the genes for the MD ring and dynamin rings are not found in the prokaryotic genome, the host genomes may make these rings to actively control mitochondrial division. In the fifth part, we focus on the dynamic changes in the formation and disassembly of the FtsZ, MD and dynamin rings. FtsZ rings are digested during a later period of mitochondrial division and then finally the MD and dynamin ring apparatuses pinched off the daughter mitochondria, supporting the idea that the host genomes are responsible for the ultimate control of mitochondrial division. We discuss the evolution, from the original vesicle division (VD) apparatuses to VD apparatuses including classical dynamin rings and MD apparatuses. It is likely that the MD apparatuses involving the dynamic trio evolved into the plastid division (PD) apparatus in Bikonta, while in Opisthokonta, the MD apparatus was simplified during evolution and may have branched into the mitochondrial fusion apparatus. Finally, we describe the possibility of intact isolation of large MD/PD apparatuses, the identification of all their proteins and their related genes using C. merolae genome information and TOF-MS analyses. These results will assist in elucidating the universal mechanism and evolution of MD, PD and VD apparatuses.
Keywords: Cyanidioschyzon; MD ring; PD ring; MD/PD apparatus; FtsZ; Dynamin; Endocytosis;

Mitochondrial fission and apoptosis: An ongoing trial by Philippe A. Parone; Jean-Claude Martinou (522-530).
Apoptosis is a form of programmed cell death that is essential for the development and tissue homeostasis in all metazoan animals. Mitochondria play a critical role during apoptosis, since the release of pro-apoptogenic proteins from the organelle is a pivotal event in cell death triggered by many cytotoxic stimuli. A striking morphological change occurring during apoptosis is the disintegration of the semi-reticular mitochondrial network into small punctiform organelles. It is only recently that this event has been shown to require the activity of proteins involved in the physiological processes of mitochondrial fission and fusion. Here, we discuss how this mitochondrial morphological transition occurs during cell death and the role that it may have in apoptosis.
Keywords: Mitochondria; Apoptosis; Fission; Fusion; Cytochrome c; Mitochondrial membrane permeabilisation;

Mitochondria and peroxisomes are ubiquitous subcellular organelles, which are highly dynamic and display large plasticity. Recent studies have led to the surprising finding that both organelles share components of their division machinery, namely the dynamin-related protein DLP1/Drp1 and hFis1, which recruits DLP1/Drp1 to the organelle membranes. This review addresses the current state of knowledge concerning the dynamics and fission of peroxisomes, especially in relation to mitochondrial morphology and division in mammalian cells.
Keywords: Dynamin; Fission; Fis1; Mitochondria; Peroxisome; Pex11;

Three-dimensional images of mitochondria provided by electron tomography reveal that the micro-compartments (cristae) defined by the inner membrane are connected to the periphery of this membrane by narrow tubular junctions, which likely restrict diffusion. The tomograms also strongly suggest that inner membrane topology represents a balance between membrane fusion and fission processes. The hypothesis being developed is that inner membrane topology is a regulated property of mitochondria. This review summarizes the evidence about how inner membrane shape influences mitochondrial function and, conversely, what is known about the factors that determine this membrane's topology.
Keywords: Mitochondria; Electron microscopy; Electron tomography; Membrane topology; Bioenergetics; Cardiolipin;

Mitochondrial membrane dynamics, cristae remodelling and apoptosis by Hannah M. Heath-Engel; Gordon C. Shore (549-560).
Mitochondria form a highly dynamic reticular network in living cells, and undergo continuous fusion/fission events and changes in ultrastructural architecture. Although significant progress has been made in elucidating the molecular events underlying these processes, their relevance to normal cell function remains largely unexplored. Emerging evidence, however, suggests an important role for mitochondrial dynamics in cellular apoptosis. The mitochondria is at the core of the intrinsic apoptosis pathway, and provides a reservoir for protein factors that induce caspase activation and chromosome fragmentation. Additionally, mitochondria modulate Ca2+ homeostasis and are a source of various metabolites, including reactive oxygen species, that have the potential to function as second messengers in response to apoptotic stimuli. One of the mitochondrial factors required for activation of caspases in most intrinsic apoptotic pathways, cytochrome c, is largely sequestered within the intracristae compartment, and must migrate into the boundary intermembrane space in order to allow passage across the outer membrane to the cytosol. Recent evidence argues that inner mitochondrial membrane dynamics regulate this process. Here, we review the contribution of mitochondrial dynamics to the intrinsic apoptosis pathway, with emphasis on the inner membrane.
Keywords: Fusion; Fission; Caspase; BCL-2; Calcium;

High resolution imaging of live mitochondria by Stefan Jakobs (561-575).
Classically, mitochondria have been studied by biochemical, genetic and electron microscopic approaches. In the last two decades, it became evident that mitochondria are highly dynamic organelles that are frequently dividing and fusing, changing size and shape and traveling long distances throughout the life of a cell. The study of the complex structural changes of mitochondria in vivo became possible with the advent of fluorescent labeling techniques in combination with live cell imaging microscopy. This review aims to provide an overview on novel fluorescent markers that are used in combination with mitochondrial fusion assays and various live cell microscopy techniques to study mitochondrial dynamics. In particular, approaches to study the movement of mitochondrial proteins and novel imaging techniques (FRET imaging-, 4Pi- and STED-microscopy) that provide high spatial resolution are considered.
Keywords: FRAP; FLIP; Fluorescence microscopy; Fusion assay; Mitochondria; Photoactivation; Self labeling protein tag;