Cytometric assessment of mitochondria using fluorescent probes

Authors

  • Cécile Cottet-Rousselle,

    Corresponding author
    1. Laboratoire de Bioénergétique Fondamentale et Appliquée, Inserm U1055, Université Joseph Fourier Grenoble, France
    • Cécile Cottet-Rousselle, Inserm U1055, Laboratoire de Bioénergétique Fondamentale et Appliquée, 2280 rue de la piscine, 38041 GRENOBLE cedex 9, France
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  • Xavier Ronot,

    1. Laboratoire CaCyS, Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, FRE 3405 AGIM UJF-CNRS-EPHE La Tronche, France
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  • Xavier Leverve,

    1. Laboratoire de Bioénergétique Fondamentale et Appliquée, Inserm U1055, Université Joseph Fourier Grenoble, France
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    • Xavier Leverve is now deceased. He died in 2010.

  • Jean-François Mayol

    1. Département des Effets Biologiques des Rayonnements, Institut de Recherche Biomédicale des Armées, La Tronche, France
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Abstract

Mitochondria are most important organelles in the survival of eukaryotic aerobic cells because they are the primary producers of ATP, regulators of ion homeostasis or redox state, and producers of free radicals. The key role of mitochondria in the generation of primordial ATP for the survival and proliferation of eukaryotic cells has been proven by extensive biochemical studies. In this context, it is crucial to understand the complexity of the mitochondrial compartment and its functionality and to develop experimental tools allowing the assessment of its nature and its function and metabolism. This review covers the role of the mitochondria in the cell, focusing on its structure, the mechanism of the mitochondrial respiratory chain, the maintenance of the transmembrane potential and the production of reactive oxygen species. The main probes used for mitochondrial compartment monitoring are described. In addition, various applications using mitochondrial-specific probes are detailed to illustrate the potential of flow and image cytometry in the study of the mitochondrial compartment. This review contains a panel of tools to explore mitochondria and to help researchers design experiments, determine the approach to be employed, and interpret their results. © 2011 International Society for Advancement of Cytometry

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