Ageing, oxidative stress, and mitochondrial uncoupling

M. E. Harper, L. Bevilacqua, Kevork Hagopian, R. Weindruch, Jon J Ramsey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

200 Scopus citations


Mitochondria are a cell's single greatest source of reactive oxygen species. Reactive oxygen species are important for many life sustaining processes of cells and tissues, but they can also induce cell damage and death. If their production and levels within cells is not effectively controlled, then the detrimental effects of oxidative stress can accumulate. Oxidative stress is widely thought to underpin many ageing processes, and the oxidative stress theory of ageing is one of the most widely acknowledged theories of ageing. As well as being the major source of reactive oxygen species, mitochondria are also a major site of oxidative damage. The purpose of this review is a concise and current review of the effects of oxidative stress and ageing on mitochondrial function. Emphasis is placed upon the roles of mitochondrial proton leak, the uncoupling proteins, and the anti-ageing effects of caloric restriction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)321-331
Number of pages11
JournalActa Physiologica Scandinavica
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2004


  • Mitochondria
  • Oxidative phosphorylation
  • Proton leak
  • Reactive oxygen species
  • Superoxide
  • Uncoupling protein

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology


Dive into the research topics of 'Ageing, oxidative stress, and mitochondrial uncoupling'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this