Targeting mitochondria with organelle-specific compounds: Strategies and applications

Lema F. Yousif, Kelly M. Stewart, Shana O. Kelley*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalShort surveypeer-review

270 Scopus citations


Mitochondria are the energy factories of the cell and also serve as a checkpoint regulating programmed cell death. Not surprisingly, dysfunctional mitochondria are implicated in a variety of diseases ranging from metabolic disorders to cancer. Treatment of these diseases through the delivery of targeted drugs, however, is impeded by the difficulty of penetrating the membranes that define this organelle. The properties of this barrier serve as a major obstacle to drug delivery and a lack of effective transporters has hindered the advancement of mitochondrial medicine. Recently, however, synthetic transporters that show promise for the mito-specific delivery of bioactive cargos have begun to emerge. This review summarizes the most exciting of these developments and discusses their applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1939-1950
Number of pages12
Issue number12
StatePublished - Aug 17 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Drug delivery
  • Membranes
  • Mitochondria
  • Mitochondria-penetrating peptide
  • Peptide transporter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Organic Chemistry


Dive into the research topics of 'Targeting mitochondria with organelle-specific compounds: Strategies and applications'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this