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Mitochondria Mitochondria are tiny organelles found in nearly all eukaryotic cells. They are rather large organelles ranging from 0.5µm to 10µm in length and 1µm in diameter. The mitochondria are the energy factories of the cell and are located in the cytoplasm. They are the sites of cellular respiration. The mitochondria are responsible for generating ATP from such organic fuels as simple sugars and fats in the process of cellular respiration. This doubled-membrane organelle has its own DNA and can reproduce by splitting itself. The mitochondria are sausage-shaped structures that move, change their shape and divide. They are distinct organelles with two membranes, the inner membrane and the outer membrane. The outer membrane is smooth and limits the organelle. It is highly permeable to small solutes such as molecules and ions, but it blocks off passages of proteins and other macromolecules. The inner membrane of the mitochondria is folded into shelf like structures called cristae. The cristae does not even allow the passage of small ions and so it maintains a closed space within the cell. The many infoldings of the cristae are responsible for providing the mitochondrion with a large surface area which enhances the productivity of respiration. The inner membrane and outer membrane effectively divide the mitochondria into two internal compartments. The space located between the outer and inner mitochondrial membrane is called the intermembrane space. The space enclosed by th...
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