Mitochondrial structure and function in biochemistry is central to the functioning of the human body. The association of mitochondria with animals is therefore an amazing turn of fate in the history of evolution. I do not know
which were the first animals to harbour mitochondria, how the relationship between mitochondria and the host evolved, and indeed whether in humans mitochondrial replication takes place directed entirely internally through the
duplication of mitochondrial DNA as a distinct prokaryotic organism still or a full symbiotic association has evolved where to some extent it is externally controlled by the host during cell duplication. This page will discuss these elements of the symbiotic association of mitochondria and eukaryotic organsims harbouring the organelles.


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