Mitochondrial Toxicity

Mitochondrial toxicity is a disease in which the cells of a body's mitochondria are impaired or decrease considerably in number. It occurs as a side effect of some antiretroviral drugs used to treat virus of human immunodeficiency, or HIV. Though the precise cause of mitochondrial toxicity remain a mystery, work has also shown that most antiviral drugs are used to treat HIV. The nucleoside analog reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs) specifically interfere with the enzyme needed for mitochondrial development. Past few decades are seeing a dramatic rise in documented toxic effects on mitochondria from drugs and pollutants.Researchers have also documented many genetic differences leading to mitochondrial diseases, which are currently reported to affect some 1 person in 4,300, creating a large number of potential gene-environmental toxicity interactions.

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