Elementary particles that commonly have been seen by electron microscopy to be attached by stalks to mitochondrial cristae in negatively stained preparations, were not apparent in similarly stained mitochondria from exponentially growing wild-type Neurospora crassa when these were isolated in sucrose solution containing 1 x 10-3M EDTA. However, elementary particles were easily demonstrable in electron micrographs if the mitochondria were isolated without EDTA in the sucrose solution. A biochemical study indicated that both kinds of mitochondrial preparations, isolated in the presence or absence of EDTA, had about the same capacity for oxidative phosphorylation. Observations on rat-liver mitochondria also suggested that the stalked elementary particles were more easily demonstrated if the preparation was made in the absence of EDTA. It was difficult to demonstrate elementary particles in wild-type Neurospora mitochondria isolated with or without EDTA and subsequently prepared for electron microscopy by spreading on the surface of an aqueous solution of potassium phosphotungstate. Elementary particles could be demonstrated in poky Neurospora mitochondria isolated with EDTA if the mitochondria were spread on the surface of an aqueous solution of phosphotungstate. It was concluded that biochemical functions associated with elementary particles are independent of structural configuration as seen by electron microscopy.

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