Javascript is not activated in your browser. This website needs javascript activated to work properly.
You are here

Mitochondria and cell death

  • Olivier Van Aken
Publishing year: 2017-01-01
Language: English
Pages: 343-371
Publication/Series: Annual Plant Reviews, Volume 50 : Plant Mitochondria, Second Edition
Document type: Book chapter
Publisher: Interscience Wiley

Abstract english

This chapter discusses the current body of evidence that supports a role for mitochondria in plant cell death. In plants, a reduction of mitochondrial function and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) levels by suppression of autophagy triggered necrosis instead of developmental programmed cell death (PCD). PCD is found to be closely associated with mitochondrial reactive oxygen species (mtROS) production in plants. A key mechanism of PCD in animal systems is the excessive swelling of mitochondria; a phenomenon termed the mitochondrial permeability transition (mPT). Mitochondria are known to trigger nuclear gene expression of stress-related genes and significant evidence points towards a role for ROS in getting signals out of the mitochondria. Many pro- and antiapoptotic proteins that are associated with mitochondria were identified in non-plant systems, and a push in the plant field was initiated to find out how much of this mitochondrial pathway is conserved. Plant mitochondria become an increasingly important metabolic hub during developmental leaf senescence.


  • Botany
  • Cell Biology
  • Autophagy
  • Developmental leaf senescence
  • Mitochondrial permeability transition pore
  • Mitochondrial programmed cell death pathway conservation
  • Mitochondrial reactive oxygen species role


  • ISBN: 9781118906583
  • ISBN: 9781118906576
Olivier van Aken
E-mail: olivier [dot] van_aken [at] biol [dot] lu [dot] se

Senior lecturer

Molecular Cell Biology

+46 46 222 94 13



Research group

Plant Biology



Doctoral students and postdocs

PhD students, main supervisor

Cuong Tran