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REVIEW: Iron-Sulfur Clusters in Mitochondrial Metabolism: Multifaceted Roles of a Simple Cofactor

Johnny Stiban1*, Minyoung So2, and Laurie S. Kaguni2*

1Birzeit University, Department of Biology and Biochemistry, P.O. Box 14, West Bank 627 Birzeit, Palestine; E-mail: jstiban@birzeit.edu

2Michigan State University, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and Center for Mitochondrial Science and Medicine, East Lansing, 48824 Michigan, USA; E-mail: lskaguni@msu.edu

* To whom correspondence should be addressed.

Received April 1, 2016; Revision received May 10, 2016
Iron-sulfur metabolism is essential for cellular function and is a key process in mitochondria. In this review, we focus on the structure and assembly of mitochondrial iron-sulfur clusters and their roles in various metabolic processes that occur in mitochondria. Iron-sulfur clusters are crucial in mitochondrial respiration, in which they are required for the assembly, stability, and function of respiratory complexes I, II, and III. They also serve important functions in the citric acid cycle, DNA metabolism, and apoptosis. Whereas the identification of iron-sulfur containing proteins and their roles in numerous aspects of cellular function has been a long-standing research area, that in mitochondria is comparatively recent, and it is likely that their roles within mitochondria have been only partially revealed. We review the status of the field and provide examples of other cellular iron-sulfur proteins to highlight their multifarious roles.
KEY WORDS: iron-sulfur clusters, iron-sulfur metabolism, mitochondria, respiration, citric acid cycle, DNA metabolism

DOI: 10.1134/S0006297916100059