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Li, V. GFM1 Gene. Encyclopedia. Available online: (accessed on 24 June 2024).
Li V. GFM1 Gene. Encyclopedia. Available at: Accessed June 24, 2024.
Li, Vivi. "GFM1 Gene" Encyclopedia, (accessed June 24, 2024).
Li, V. (2020, December 25). GFM1 Gene. In Encyclopedia.
Li, Vivi. "GFM1 Gene." Encyclopedia. Web. 25 December, 2020.
GFM1 Gene

G elongation factor mitochondrial 1


1. Normal Function

The GFM1 gene provides instructions for making an enzyme called mitochondrial translation elongation factor G1. This enzyme is found in cell structures called mitochondria, which are the energy-producing centers within cells. While instructions for making most of the body's proteins are found in DNA that is stored in the nucleus of cells (nuclear DNA), a few proteins and other molecules are produced from DNA that is stored in mitochondria (mtDNA). Mitochondrial translation elongation factor G1 is involved in the production of proteins from mtDNA through a process called translation. The mtDNA genes provide instructions for products that are involved in protein production and the process of turning energy taken in from food into a form that cells can use (oxidative phosphorylation).

During translation, mtRNA molecules, which are the protein blueprints created from mtDNA, interact with specialized complexes called ribosomes to assemble protein building blocks (amino acids) into a fully formed protein. The role of mitochondrial translation elongation factor G1 is to coordinate the movements of mtRNA molecules with ribosomes to allow assembly of the protein to continue until it is complete.

2. Health Conditions Related to Genetic Changes

2.1 Combined Oxidative Phosphorylation Deficiency 1

At least 18 mutations in the GFM1 gene have been found to cause combined oxidative phosphorylation deficiency 1. This condition causes severe neurologic and liver dysfunction. Affected individuals usually do not survive past early childhood. Most of the GFM1 gene mutations change single amino acids in the mitochondrial translation elongation factor G1 enzyme. Such alterations reduce or eliminate the enzyme's function. As a result, fewer mitochondrial proteins involved in oxidative phosphorylation are produced. Organs that have high energy demands, such as the brain and liver, are particularly affected by the resulting impairment of oxidative phosphorylation. A shortage of energy in these tissues leads to cell death, causing the neurological and liver problems in people with combined oxidative phosphorylation deficiency 1. It is thought that other tissues that require a lot of energy, such as the heart and other muscles, are not affected in this condition because they have additional enzymes that can perform the process of mitochondrial protein production.

2.2 Leigh Syndrome

3. Other Names for This Gene

  • EFG

  • EFG1

  • EFGM

  • EGF1

  • G translation elongation factor, mitochondrial

  • GFM

  • hEFG1

  • mitochondrial elongation factor G

  • mitochondrial elongation factor G1


  1. Antonicka H, Sasarman F, Kennaway NG, Shoubridge EA. The molecular basis fortissue specificity of the oxidative phosphorylation deficiencies in patients withmutations in the mitochondrial translation factor EFG1. Hum Mol Genet. 2006 Jun1;15(11):1835-46.
  2. Balasubramaniam S, Choy YS, Talib A, Norsiah MD, van den Heuvel LP, Rodenburg RJ. Infantile Progressive Hepatoencephalomyopathy with Combined OXPHOS Deficiencydue to Mutations in the Mitochondrial Translation Elongation Factor Gene GFM1.JIMD Rep. 2012;5:113-22. doi: 10.1007/8904_2011_107.
  3. Coenen MJ, Antonicka H, Ugalde C, Sasarman F, Rossi R, Heister JG, Newbold RF,Trijbels FJ, van den Heuvel LP, Shoubridge EA, Smeitink JA. Mutant mitochondrial elongation factor G1 and combined oxidative phosphorylation deficiency. N Engl J Med. 2004 Nov 11;351(20):2080-6.
  4. Ravn K, Schönewolf-Greulich B, Hansen RM, Bohr AH, Duno M, Wibrand F,Ostergaard E. Neonatal mitochondrial hepatoencephalopathy caused by novel GFM1mutations. Mol Genet Metab Rep. 2015 Feb 20;3:5-10. doi:10.1016/j.ymgmr.2015.01.004.
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Update Date: 25 Dec 2020
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