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J Cell Biol. Nov 26, 2001; 155(5): 703–704.
PMCID: PMC2150864
Myosin-I nomenclature
Peter G. Gillespie,1 Joseph P. Albanesi,2 Martin Bähler,3 William M. Bement,4 Jonathan S. Berg,5 David R. Burgess,6 Beth Burnside,7 Richard E. Cheney,5 David P. Corey,8 Evelyne Coudrier,9 Primal de Lanerolle,10 John A. Hammer,11 Tama Hasson,12 Jeffrey R. Holt,13 A.J. Hudspeth,14 Mitsuo Ikebe,15 John Kendrick-Jones,16 Edward D. Korn,17 Rong Li,18 John A. Mercer,19 Ronald A. Milligan,20 Mark S. Mooseker,21 E. Michael Ostap,22 Christine Petit,23 Thomas D. Pollard,21 James R. Sellers,24 Thierry Soldati,25 and Margaret A. Titus26
1Oregon Hearing Research Center and Vollum Institute, Oregon Health and Science University, Portland, OR 97201
2Department of Pharmacology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX 75390
3Institut für Allgemeine Zoologie und Genetik, Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, Münster, Germany
4Department of Zoology, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI 53706
5Department of Cell and Molecular Physiology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC 27599
6Department of Biology, Boston College, Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
7Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720
8Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital, and Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Boston, MA 02114
9Morphogenese et Signalisation Cellulaires, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Unite Mixte de Recherche 144, Institut Curie, 75248 Paris Cedex 05, France
10Department of Physiology, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL 60612
11Laboratory of Cell Biology, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892
12Division of Biology, Section of Cell and Developmental Biology, University of California at San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093
13Department of Neuroscience and Otolaryngology, University of Virginia Medical School, Charlottesville, VA 22908
14Laboratory of Sensory Neuroscience and Howard Hughes Medical Institute, The Rockefeller University, New York, NY 10021
15Department of Physiology, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, MA 01655
16MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Hills Road, Cambridge, CB2 2QH, UK
17Laboratory of Cell Biology, National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892
18Department of Cell Biology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115
19McLaughlin Research Institute, Great Falls, MT 59405
20Department of Cell Biology, The Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, CA, 92037
21Department of Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology, Yale University, New Haven, CT 06520
22Department of Physiology and The Pennsylvania Muscle Institute, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA 19104
23Unite de Genetique des Deficits Sensoriels, CNRS URA 1968, Institut Pasteur, 25 rue du Dr. Roux, 75724 Paris cedex 15, France
24Laboratory of Molecular Cardiology, National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892
25Department of Biological Sciences, Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, London SW7 2AZ, UK
26Department of Genetics, Cell Biology and Development, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN 55455
Address correspondence to Peter G. Gillespie, Oregon Hearing Research Center and Vollum Institute, Oregon Health and Science University, Portland, OR 97201. Tel.: (503) 494-2936. Fax: (503) 494-2976. E-mail: gillespp/at/
We suggest that the vertebrate myosin-I field adopt a common nomenclature system based on the names adopted by the Human Genome Organization (HUGO). At present, the myosin-I nomenclature is very confusing; not only are several systems in use, but several different genes have been given the same name. Despite their faults, we believe that the names adopted by the HUGO nomenclature group for genome annotation are the best compromise, and we recommend universal adoption.
In the HUGO system (, the Homo sapiens myosin-I gene names are MYO1A, MYO1B,…, MYO1H; the corresponding protein products are MYO1A, MYO1B,…, MYO1H. The Mus musculus gene names are Myo1a, Myo1b,…, Myo1h; the corresponding protein products are Myo1a, Myo1b,…, Myo1h. Although these names do not reflect the subclass relationships between genes (MYO1A and MYO1B; MYO1C and MYO1H; MYO1D and MYO1G; and MYO1E and MYO1F are most closely related; Fig. 1), this system names all myosin-I genes and their protein products and is presently being used to annotate the human and mouse genomes. The HUGO names are reconciled with other naming systems used for myosin-I gene products in Table I.
Figure 1.
Figure 1.
Tree for human myosin-I genes. From Berg et al. (2001). Two recently predicted myosin-I genes are italicized, with the gene names suggested for them indicated in brackets.
Table I.
Table I.
Reconciliation of myosin-I names in the literature
We recommend those working with other vertebrates adopt the mouse names (upper case for the first letter, lower case for the rest), if appropriate modifying the gene or protein name using an abbreviation for the Latin binomial (e.g., Rc for Rana catesbeiana, Xl for Xenopus laevis). For example, myr 1—a rat myosin—would now be named Rn Myo1b (or just Myo1b).
To provide continuity with the previous literature, we suggest that common names be mentioned the first time that the gene or protein is mentioned; after that point, however, only the systematic name should be used.
Finally, although we have focused on the myosin-I family, we recommend that those working on other myosin families follow a similar naming convention.
  • Berg, J.S., B.C. Powell, and R.E. Cheney. 2001. A millennial myosin census. Mol. Biol. Cell. 12:780–794. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
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