It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
Cataloging DNA in the microbe turns up none of the known genes for mitochondrial proteins. But stealing genetic material from bacteria — which survive without mitochondria — allowed the microbe to do without them, too, researchers report May 12 in Current Biology.
Mitochondria are tiny capsules that speckle the insides of all complex cells from pond scum to people, or so textbooks have said for decades. Some complex (or eukaryotic) cells look as if they have no mitochondria; so far, though, further searches have eventually detected mitochondrial remnants. But Monocercomonoides appears to have completely done away with mitochondria and the genes to make them, says study coauthor Anna Karnkowska, an evolutionary biologist now at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. This discovery marks “the most extreme mitochondrial reduction observed,” says Vladimír Hampl of Charles University in Prague, also a coauthor of the study.
Although commonly described as cell powerhouses, mitochondria don’t have much to do with supplying energy for cells that live in low-oxygen or no-oxygen environments, Karnkowska says. For these anaerobic cells, mitochondria can serve as more of a building studio. One supposedly essential mitochondrial function, scientists have proposed, is assembling clusters of iron and sulfur that activate a class of widely useful cell compounds. Bacteria and other simple (prokaryotic) cells have their own assembly systems, and they don’t need to wall off the construction of iron-sulfur clusters. The newly studied Monocercomonoides carry the genes for an assembly system that looks as if it was taken from bacteria, the researchers conclude.
originally posted by: Brotherman
This is so exciting I cant wait to get my hands on chinchilla ***t to play with.