Given the importance of mtDNA for cellular energy supply, it is not surprising that mutations within mtDNA have been identified as the cause for a multitude of human diseases and have been tightly linked to the ageing process and altered stem cell homeostasis. Accordingly, to ensure organismal health, good copies of mtDNA have to be faithfully inherited during cell division, their integrity needs to be maintained over generations and they need to be distributed throughout the mitochondrial network to provide all mitochondrial segments with mtDNA encoded proteins. Astonishingly, it remains poorly understood how cells accomplish these fundamental tasks. It is the aim of our lab to shed light on the mechanisms that underlie these fascinating processes.
For further information see: http://www.cellbiology.bio.lmu.de/people/principal_investigators/osman_christof/index.html