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Reviewed September 2013
What is the official name of the MYO5A gene?
The official name of this gene is “myosin VA (heavy chain 12, myoxin).”
MYO5A is the gene's official symbol. The MYO5A gene is also known by other names, listed below.
Read more about gene names and symbols on the About page.
What is the normal function of the MYO5A gene?
The MYO5A gene provides instructions for making a protein called myosin Va, which is part of a group of proteins called unconventional myosins. These proteins, which have similar structures, each play a role in transporting molecules within cells. Myosins interact with actin, a protein that is important for cell movement and shape. Researchers believe that myosins use long filaments of actin as tracks along which to transport other molecules.
Myosin Va is found in pigment-producing cells called melanocytes, where it helps transport structures called melanosomes. These structures produce a pigment called melanin, which is the substance that gives skin, hair, and eyes their color (pigmentation). Myosin Va interacts with proteins produced from the MLPH and RAB27A genes to form a complex that transports melanosomes to the outer edges of melanocytes. From there, the melanosomes are transferred to other types of cells, where they provide the pigment needed for normal hair, skin, and eye coloring.
Myosin Va also plays an important role in nerve cells (neurons) in the brain. Studies suggest that myosin Va transports various proteins and other molecules within neurons. It is also involved in the release of certain substances from these cells (exocytosis). The movement of these materials appears to be critical for normal brain function.
Does the MYO5A gene share characteristics with other genes?
The MYO5A gene belongs to a family of genes called myosin superfamily (myosin superfamily).
A gene family is a group of genes that share important characteristics. Classifying individual genes into families helps researchers describe how genes are related to each other. For more information, see What are gene families? in the Handbook.
How are changes in the MYO5A gene related to health conditions?
Where is the MYO5A gene located?
Cytogenetic Location: 15q21
Molecular Location on chromosome 15: base pairs 52,599,479 to 52,821,246
The MYO5A gene is located on the long (q) arm of chromosome 15 at position 21.
More precisely, the MYO5A gene is located from base pair 52,599,479 to base pair 52,821,246 on chromosome 15.
See How do geneticists indicate the location of a gene? in the Handbook.
Where can I find additional information about MYO5A?
You and your healthcare professional may find the following resources about MYO5A helpful.
You may also be interested in these resources, which are designed for genetics professionals and researchers.
What other names do people use for the MYO5A gene or gene products?
See How are genetic conditions and genes named? in the Handbook.
Where can I find general information about genes?
The Handbook provides basic information about genetics in clear language.
These links provide additional genetics resources that may be useful.
What glossary definitions help with understanding MYO5A?
You may find definitions for these and many other terms in the Genetics Home Reference Glossary.
See also Understanding Medical Terminology.
References (6 links)
The resources on this site should not be used as a substitute for professional medical care or advice. Users seeking information about a personal genetic disease, syndrome, or condition should consult with a qualified healthcare professional. See How can I find a genetics professional in my area? in the Handbook.