Cell Biology: Mitochondria Introduction

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5 Questions

Where are the proteins involved in the electron transport chain located?

In the inner mitochondrial membrane

What is the main function of the space between the outer and inner membranes of the mitochondrion?

Facilitation of metabolite and coenzyme exchange

Which component of the mitochondrial matrix plays an important role in the synthesis of ATP molecules?


What is the impermeable to protons and selectively permeable due to specific transporters?

The inner mitochondrial membrane

What is the main component of the outer mitochondrial membrane?


Study Notes

Introduction to Mitochondria

  • Mitochondria are organelles within eukaryotic cells that produce adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the main energy molecule used by the cell.
  • Mitochondria are found in all eukaryotes, which include all living things except bacteria and archaea.

Definition of Mitochondria

  • A mitochondrion is a membrane-bound organelle found in the cytoplasm of almost all eukaryotic cells.
  • Mitochondria are typically round to oval in shape and range in size from 0.5 to 10 μm.
  • The primary function of mitochondria is to produce energy, but they can also store calcium for cell signaling activities, generate heat, and mediate cell growth and death.

Structure of Mitochondria

  • Mitochondria have two membranes: an outer membrane and an inner membrane.
  • Both membranes are composed of phospholipid layers, similar to the cell's outer membrane.

Mitochondrial Characteristics

  • The number of mitochondria per cell varies widely, with some cells having none (e.g., erythrocytes) and others having hundreds or thousands (e.g., liver cells and muscle cells).

Test your knowledge of the introduction to mitochondria, the powerhouse of the cell, and their role in producing ATP. Explore the characteristics and origin of mitochondria found in all eukaryotic cells.

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