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In this paper current knowledge concerning the role of mitochondria in plant programmed cell death (PCD) is presented. It has been already suggested that plant mitochondria, similarly to animal ones, can induce PCD. Senescence process in plants which engages PCD mechanisms involves transport and redistribution of metabolites what require energy generated in mitochondria. It seems therefore that PCD in plants might proceed in different way than animal apoptosis. It is still not clear whether mitochondrial permeability transition (MPT) and decrease of mitochondrial transmembrane potential (∆Ψm) always take place in plants. Release of cytochrome c into cytosol and its inducible role in PCD in free-cell system in plants may suggest the existence of some common pathways of animal apoptosis and plant PCD. In spite of many results concerning induction of PCD during differentiation process, existing data do not elucidate the role of mitochondria in this process.

The Editorial Board
Andrzej Łukaszyk - przewodniczący, Zofia Bielańska-Osuchowska, Szczepan Biliński, Mieczysław Chorąży, Aleksander Koj, Włodzimierz Korochoda, Leszek Kuźnicki, Aleksandra Stojałowska, Lech Wojtczak

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Katedra i Zakład Histologii i Embriologii Uniwersytetu Medycznego w Poznaniu, ul. Święcickiego 6, 60-781 Poznań, tel. +48 61 8546453, fax. +48 61 8546440, email:

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