Article


Electron Microscopy of Mitochondrial Pathology in Central Nervous Diseases. A Review

Orlando J. Castejon

Biological Research Institute, Faculty of Medicine, Zulia University, Maracaibo, Venezuela

Dr. Orlando J. Castejon, Biological Research Institute, Faculty of Medicine, Zulia University, Maracaibo, Venezuela.

Keywords: Mitochondrial Pathology; Congenital Hydrocephalus; Mitochondrial Matrix

Abstract

The present review describes the pathology of mitochondria in numerous central nervous diseases. Three injured mitochondrial morphological patterns are found in the human edematous cerebral cortex of patients with complicated brain trauma associated with subdural hematomas or hygroma, brain tumors, vascular anomalies, and congenital hydrocephalus. Swollen clear (SCM), swollen dense (SDM), and dark degenerated (DDM) mitochondria are described. SCM were predominantly found in traumatic brain edema. SDM and DDM were frequently observed in sustained permanent ischemia induced by brain tumors, vascular anomaly and congenital hydrocephalus. SCM exhibit low electron dense mitochondrial matrix, enlarged intracristal space and continuity of outer and inner mitochondrial membranes. SDM show high electron dense matrix and swollen intact or fragmented cristae. DDM display overall high electron density of matrix and mitochondrial membranes. The role of anoxic-ischemic conditions of brain parenchyma, calcium overload, lipid peroxidation and reactive oxygen species, glutamate excitotoxicity, cytochrome C release, and nitric oxide and its derivatives are discussed in relation with mitochondrial dysfunction and nerve cell death. The injured mitochondrial patterns are considered markers of lethal nerve cell injury.

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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. (CC BY 4.0).

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