Mitochondrial Eve

At some point in the far distant past, when our eukaryotic ancestors were just becoming eukaryotic, one enterprising individual surrounded and assimilated an unlucky form of early bacteria.  It was most likely done so for energy.  The genome of this bacteria became part of our genome, forever preserved in what we call the mitochondria.

Mitochondrial DNA is only inherited from your mother.  Your father had nothing to do with it.  Everyone alive on earth today can trace their lineage back to Mitochondrial Eve.  We know this because we’ve all received our Mitochondrial DNA from her.  It has been passed down generation by generation from mother to daughter.

Mitochondrial Eve was performed by the talented voice actress Mackenzie Bryant.  You can learn more about Mackenzie and her work at


Subscribe to the show in iTunes or Stitcher (Please leave a comment and rating.  It will help the show immensely.  Thank you!)

Episode Bibliography

  • “Mitochondrial Eve, Mark Stoneking”. DNA Learning Center. Accessed June, 10,

Music in the Episode

The music in this episode was composed by Rick Coste