Sometimes more is more: raising mitochondrial DNA copy number could treat disease

So, here is a very interesting paper I found today!

Karolinska Institutet Career Blog

Mitochondria are the power plants of our cells and are descendants of cooperating bacteria. A study in mice shows that increasing the copies of mitochondria’s own DNA could be used as therapy for certain human diseases.

Isabel Hofman

Mitochondria are the power plants of eukaryotic cells, as the mitochondrial respiratory electron transport chain serves as the main cellular energy source. These organelles are generally accepted to be descendants of primitive bacteria that started to cooperate with single-celled organisms that became our primordial ancestors (BOX 1). As a relic of these ancient times, mitochondria still carry their own genetic material1.

BOX 1: Evolution of mitochondria
The exact identities of both the ancestral mitochondrion, and the cell that engulfed it to become the ancestor of all eukaryotes, are unclear. Several theories speculate on the conformation of the ancient tandem as the metabolic nature of the pre-mitochondrion and the evolutionary stage…

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