Humanity has always wondered about its very origin. The curiosity powering the human mind has even led him to question the origin of organisms and substances at the microscopic level. Man wondered as to how did the mitochondrion develop into the powerhouse of cells. It is a common theory that mitochondria come from bacterial cells that were captured by host cells to later become energy factories. Surprisingly though, a new study has suggested that mitochondria were energy parasites.
Researchers of a new study have concluded from their results that mitochondria are related to parasitic bacteria, arguing that the former were energy parasites prior to becoming the powerhouse of cells.
Mitochondria are those organelles which provide the compartments for the energy-making processes of cells in both animals and plants. The scientists purport that the origin of the mitochondrion is a group of parasitic microorganisms after having decoded the genomes of 18 bacteria that seem to be closely related to mitochondria.
Initially, it was believed that two simple cells of bacteria were incorporated by host cells to later transform into the energy source of the host, as the result of a mutualistic relationship built between the bacterial cells and the host.
However, the new study suggest that the association did not start up as mutualism. The interpretation of the scientists allude to the theory that the mitochondria were actually energy parasites, feeding upon the energy of the host cells. Evidence as to how would the transformation from parasite to energy factory of host cells has not been generated though.