Mitochondrial research has influenced our understanding of human evolution, physiology and pathophysiology. Mitochondria, intracellular organelles widely known as 'energy factories' of the cell, also play fundamental roles in intermediary metabolism, steroid hormone and heme biosyntheses, calcium signaling, generation of radical oxygen species, and apoptosis. Mitochondria possess a distinct DNA (mitochondrial DNA); yet, the vast majority of mitochondrial proteins are encoded by the nuclear DNA. Mitochondria-related genetic defects have been described in a variety of mostly rare, often fatal, primary mitochondrial disorders; furthermore, they are increasingly reported in association with many common morbid conditions, such as cancer, obesity, diabetes and neurodegenerative disorders, although their role remains unclear. This study describes the creation of a human mitochondria-focused cDNA microarray (hMitChip) and its validation in human skeletal muscle cells treated with glucocorticoids. We suggest that hMitChip is a reliable and novel tool that will prove useful for systematically studying the contribution of mitochondrial genomics to human health and disease.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Medicine