Mitochondria And Endoplasmic Reticulum: 5 Complete Facts

Mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum are the two essential organelles present in the cytoplasm of eukaryotes. Let us know more about the two.

Mitochondria synthesizes energy in the form of ATP from food by oxidation where as endoplasmic reticulum are membrane bound channel like organelle extending from nuclear membrane to plasma membrane dividing cytoplasm into several compartments.

Let us discuss if mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum works together, how they work together, difference between mitochondria and ER, and many other related questions in this article.

Does mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum work together?

Mitochondrion synthesis energy currency whereas endoplasmic reticulum synthesis protein. Let us see if mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum works together.

Mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum work together as a unit. The structure and functionality of mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) contact sites are determined by a subset of lipids and specialised proteins that are abundant in these dynamic modules.

Lipid transfer, the event of autophagosomes, mitochondrial fission, Ca2+ homeostasis, and apoptosis are all regulated by mitochondria-endoplasmic reticulum connecting sites.

How does mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum work together?

Mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum, two necessary organelles for eukaryotic organisms, work together as a unit. Let us understand how they work together in details.

The mode of working of mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum together is detailed below:

  • Mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum works together as a specialised structural domain called mitochondria-associated ER membranes(MAM).
  • MAM regulates processes like lipid and calcium homeostasis, mitochondrial evolution, as well as other related cellular behaviours like autophagy, ER stress, inflammation, and apoptosis.
  • Control of Ca2+ signalling, is a significant area of functional interaction between the ER and mitochondria. These two organelles collaborate to supply Ca2+ signals within a highly dynamic, interconnected network.
  • Numerous studies have demonstrated the importance of MAMs in preserving the healthy operation of both mitochondria and ER.

When does mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum work together?

In eukaryotic cells, ER and mitochondria are crucial organelles that participate in numerous biological processes. Let us know when these two organelles work together.

Mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum works together when the mitochondrion is almost entirely ringed by the ER tubules, at the point of ER-mitochondria interaction. Lipid traffic, which controls lipid synthesis, and Ca2+ buffering depends upon ER-mitochondria tethering.

The development of mitochondrial constriction sites may be mediated by ER tubules, which were found to be connected with mitochondria.

Difference between mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum?

Only eukaryotic cells have mitochondria and ER, both of which play significant roles inside the cytoplasm. Let us see the difference between these two organelles.

Major difference between mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum are given below:

Factors MitochondriaEndoplasmic reticulum
definition Mitochondria are double membraned cell organelle of eukaryotes associated with Kreb’s cycle aerobic respiration.Endoplasmic reticulum are tubular cell organelles that divides the cell into several compartments.
originMitochondria usually originates from plasma membrane or nuclear membrane. It might also form from another pre-existing mitochondria by division.ER is originated from nuclear membrane and plasma membrane.
shape Mitochondria maybe spherical, oval , rod like or thread likeEndoplasmic reticulum may be tubular, flat sac-like and in the form of small vesicles.
sizelegth: 1.5μm-10μm
breadth: 0.5μm-1μm
sac: 40-50 μm
tubule: 50-190 μm
vesicles: 30-150μm
numberIn eukaryotic cell, just one mitochondria is present but the number of mitochondria can vary from the organism to organism. Even different forms of cell contain different number of mitochondria. The number of endoplasmic reticulum is not fixed in a cell, it can vary from cell to cell. The larger the cell, the more endoplasmic reticulum present in it.
functionMitochondria promote cellular respiration. It synthesizes ATP and other respiratory enzymes.In the formation of the skeletal framework in a cell, it synthesizes protein and it is because of ER, ration of chemical reaction in the cell occurs.
Difference between Mitochondria and Endoplasmic Reticulum.


In eukaryotic cells, the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and mitochondria are crucial organelles that participate in numerous biological processes. While ER is involved in folding, lipid metabolism, and Ca2+ homeostasis, mitochondria are responsible for producing ATP, maintaining Ca2+ homeostasis, and controlling apoptosis. These organelles each have their own roles to play, but they also collaborate via the mitochondrial-associated ER membrane (MAM) to offer an additional degree of control over apoptosis, Ca2+ buffering, lipid synthesis, and energy production. Therefore, MAM abnormalities affect cell survival and death.

Sadiqua Noor

Hi...I am Sadiqua Noor, done Postgraduation in Biotechnology, my area of interest is molecular biology and genetics, apart from these I have a keen interest in scientific article writing in simpler words so that the people from non-science backgrounds can also understand the beauty and gifts of science. I have 5 years of experience as a tutor. Let's connect through LinkedIn-

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