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Hexokinase Squeezes and Boosts Mitochondria During Energy Stress

Exciting new research reveals a fascinating survival strategy employed by cells during energy stress! When glucose and ATP levels drop, Hexokinase 1 (HK1) steps in as a last resort. It forms rings around mitochondria at ER contact points, squeezing them to boost TCA cycle activity and prevent mitochondrial fission by displacing Drp1 from Mff and Fis1. This constriction helps rewire metabolism to adapt to stress.

Once the energy stress subsides, HK1 disassembles the rings, releasing its grip and allowing mitochondria to function normally again. These findings highlight the non-catalytic roles of metabolic enzymes and the intricate interplay between cellular metabolism and organelle dynamics. This intricate process showcases the versatility and resilience of cellular mechanisms!

Pilic, J., et al., "Hexokinase 1 forms rings that regulate mitochondrial fission during energy stress," Molecular Cell, 2024.

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