Mitochondrial network energetics in the heart

Miguel A. Aon, Sonia Cortassa

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


At the core of eukaryotic aerobic life, mitochondrial function like 'hubs' in the web of energetic and redox processes in cells. In the heart, these networks-extending beyond the complex connectivity of biochemical circuit diagrams and apparent morphology-exhibit collective dynamics spanning several spatiotemporal levels of organization, from the cell, to the tissue, and the organ. The network function of mitochondria, i.e., mitochondrial network energetics, represents an advantageous behavior. Its coordinated action, under normal physiology, provides robustness despite failure in a few nodes, and improves energy supply toward a swiftly changing demand. Extensive diffuse loops, encompassing mitochondrial-cytoplasmic reaction/transport networks, control and regulate energy supply and demand in the heart. Under severe energy crises, the network behavior of mitochondria and associated glycolytic and other metabolic networks collapse, thereby triggering fatal arrhythmias.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)599-613
Number of pages15
JournalWiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Systems Biology and Medicine
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology (miscellaneous)


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