In Madeleine L Engles childrens novel A Wrinkle in Time, the mitochondria in one of the characters starts to die. Describe what would happen to people who lost their mitochondria, and explain why it would happen.
Mitochondria are cellular organelles that function in the production of energy with in the cell. They are referred to as the ‘power house’ of the cell because of the highly important role in the survival of the cell. Such energy generated is useful in the anabolic and catabolic processes the cell undertakes. Indeed, it is an inevitable organelle of the cell. In a situation where the function is impaired or totally lost, the production of energy in form of Adenosine triphosphate [ATP] is diminished or lost. When this happens, the cell may begin to show signs of cellular injury. If this is not reversed, the cell may progress to irreversible cell injury and eventually to cell death. In this case, the function of the cell is lost and this shows in the tissue where it is located.
In individuals who have lost their mitochondria, energy production is lost; metabolic activities are halted and the basal metabolic status of the cell is down. Such people experience universal loss of tissue function and organs. There could be lethargy, anorexia and cachexia. In the movie, these features show in the character that begins to loose the mitochondria. Basal metabolic rate is low, and necrosis and apoptosis ensue.