UMMS Affiliation

Department of Cell Biology

Publication Date


Document Type



Aging; Reactive Oxygen Species; DNA, Mitochondrial


Cell and Developmental Biology | Cell Biology | Physiology


Aging is an intricate phenomenon characterized by progressive decline in physiological functions and increase in mortality that is often accompanied by many pathological diseases. Although aging is almost universally conserved among all organisms, the underlying molecular mechanisms of aging remain largely elusive. Many theories of aging have been proposed, including the free-radical and mitochondrial theories of aging. Both theories speculate that cumulative damage to mitochondria and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) caused by reactive oxygen species (ROS) is one of the causes of aging. Oxidative damage affects replication and transcription of mtDNA and results in a decline in mitochondrial function which in turn leads to enhanced ROS production and further damage to mtDNA. In this paper, we will present the current understanding of the interplay between ROS and mitochondria and will discuss their potential impact on aging and age-related diseases.

Rights and Permissions

Copyright © 2012 Hang Cui et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

DOI of Published Version



J Signal Transduct. 2012;2012:646354. Epub 2011 Oct 2. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Journal of signal transduction

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID