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Available structures
PDBOrtholog search: PDBe RCSB
AliasesMYOC, GLC1A, GPOA, JOAG, JOAG1, TIGR, myocilin
External IDsMGI: 1202864 HomoloGene: 220 GeneCards: MYOC
Gene location (Human)
Chromosome 1 (human)
Chr.Chromosome 1 (human)[1]
Chromosome 1 (human)
Genomic location for MYOC
Genomic location for MYOC
Band1q24.3Start171,635,417 bp[1]
End171,652,683 bp[1]
RNA expression pattern
PBB GE MYOC 210155 at fs.png
More reference expression data
RefSeq (mRNA)



RefSeq (protein)



Location (UCSC)Chr 1: 171.64 – 171.65 MbChr 1: 162.64 – 162.65 Mb
PubMed search[3][4]
View/Edit HumanView/Edit Mouse

Myocilin, trabecular meshwork inducible glucocorticoid response, also known as MYOC, is a protein which in humans is encoded by the MYOC gene.[5][6] Mutations in MYOC are a major cause of glaucoma.

Gene location[edit]

The cytogenetic location of human MYOC gene is on the long (q) arm of chromosome 1, specifically at position 24.3 (1q24.3).[7] The gene’s molecular location starts at is 171,635,417 bp and ends at 171,652,63 bp on chromosome 1 (Annotation: GRCh38.p12) (assembly).

Protein characteristics[edit]

Myocilin is a protein with a weight of 55 kDa (504 amino acid) and an overall acidic property is the first gene that has been linked to Primary Open Angle Glaucoma (POAG).[5]

Protein strutcure[edit]

The protein is made up of the two folding domains, the leucine zipper-like domain at the N-terminal and an olfactomedin-like domain at the C-terminal. The domain at the N-terminal is known to have 77.6% homology to the myosin heavy chain of Dictyostelium discoideum and 25% homology with the cardiac β-myosin heavy chain.[6][8] The gene encodes three different exons, each consisting of different structural and functional domains.[9]

The N-terminal is encoded by exon 1 and contains the leucine zipper structural motif, which consists of 50 amino acid residues (117-169 amino acids).[8] The motif is found on an α-helix, which enhances the binding of the protein. The name of the domain arises due to the occurrence of leucine as well as, arginine repeats periodically on the α-helix.[9][8] The leucine zipper domain also contains the myocilin-myocilin interactions between amino acid residues 117-166.[10] Exon 2 encodes the central region of the protein at amino acid residues 203-245 however, no structural or functional domains are found in this region. Exon 3 encodes the C-terminal of myocilin and has been found to contain the olfactomedin-like domain.[11] The olfactomedin is an extracellular matrix protein with no defined role but is abundantly found in the olfactory neuroepithelium.[11] In the myocilin protein, the domain consists of a single disulfide bond which connects two cysteine residues (245 and 433 amino acids).[12]

Protein localisation[edit]

Myocilin is specifically located in the ciliary rootlet and basal body which connects to the cilium of photoreceptor cells in the rough endoplasmic reticulum. The intracellularly distributed protein is processed in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and in secreted into the aqueous humour.[13] It is only imported into the trabecular meshwork of the mitochondria. In the extracellular space, it appears in the trabecular meshwork cells through an unconventional mechanism which is associated with exosome-like vesicles. Myocilin localises in the Golgi apparatus of corneal fibroblasts and Schlemm's canal endothelial cells.[14][15]

Protein processing[edit]

Several isoforms are produced due to post-translational modifications processes including, glycosylation and palmitoylation.[16] The gene undergoes N-glycosylation at the Asn-Glu-Ser site (57–59 amino acids) and O-glycosylation throughout the protein at the Ser-Pro, Pro-Ser, Thr-Xaa-Xaa-Pro, Ser-Xaa-Xaa-Xaa-Pro sites.[16][17]

Myocilin also undergoes a proteolytic cleavage in the endoplasmic reticulum at residue Arg-226. The cleavage process is calcium dependant and results in two fragments.[18] One fragment contains the C-terminal olfactomedin-like domain (35 kDa), and the other contains the N-terminal leucine zipper-like domain (20 kDa).[9][18]


MYOC encodes the protein myocilin. The precise function of myocilin is unknown, but it is normally secreted into the aqueous humor of the eye. MYOC mutations, which cause myocilin to accumulate in the cells of the trabecular meshwork are a common cause of glaucoma. Most MYOC mutations identified in glaucoma patients are heterozygous and are confined to the olfactomedin domain, which is encoded by exon 3.[8]

Myocilin is believed to have a role in cytoskeletal function. MYOC is expressed in many ocular tissues, including the trabecular meshwork, and was revealed to be the trabecular meshwork glucocorticoid-inducible response protein (TIGR). The trabecular meshwork is a specialized eye tissue essential in regulating intraocular pressure, and mutations in MYOC have been identified as the cause of hereditary juvenile-onset open-angle glaucoma.[19]

Scientific research has found the function of myocilin to be linked with other proteins, making it part of a protein complex. The isoform of the cytochrome P450 protein, 1B1 (CYP1B1) has shown interaction with myocilin. CYP1B1 is also found in several structures so the eye including, trabecular meshwork and the ciliary body.[20]

Mutations and associated diseases[edit]

Differing mutations in the MYOC gene have been reported to associate with glaucoma 1, open angle (GLC1A) and glaucoma 3, primary congenital (GLC3A).

Glaucoma 1, open angle (GLC1A)[edit]

Glaucoma 1 is a form of primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG), which is characterized based on a specific pattern of defects in the optic nerve, thus causing visual defects.[5][21] The disease causes an angle in the anterior chamber of the eye to be left open, which in turn causes the intraocular pressure to be increased. Although an increase in the intraocular pressure is a major factor for glaucoma, the disease can occur independently of the intraocular pressure.[21] Furthermore, the damage done to the optical nerve has been classified as irreversible because no symptoms of the disease are apparent (asymptomatic) until its last stages.[21]

Glaucoma 3, primary congenital (GLC3A)[edit]

Glaucoma 3 arises due to mutations in the distinct genetic loci of MYOC. This mutation contributes to GLC3A through digenic inheritance with the CYP1B1 protein.[20] The mutation gives rise to an autosomal recessive form of primary congenital glaucoma (PCG). The disease initiates at birth or in early childhood due to the increase in intraocular pressure, large ocular globes (buphthalmos) and corneal edema. The progression of the disease causes defects in the trabecular meshwork and anterior chamber angle of the eye preventing the drainage from the aqueous humor.[20]

Overall frequency of disease-causing mutations at MYOC in different races[22]:

Race Occurrence frequency (%)
African 4.44
Asian 3.30
Caucasian 3.86

Clinical significance[edit]

MYOC contains a signal sequence for secretion and is secreted into the aqueous humor of the eye by the trabecular meshwork. Mutations in MYOC are found in 4% of adult-onset primary open-angle glaucoma and >10% of juvenile-onset primary open-angle glaucoma. Overexpression or underexpression of MYOC does not cause glaucoma. However, the MYOC gene also contains a signal sequence, which is normally not functional, that directs intracellular proteins to peroxisomes. Glaucoma-associated mutations activate that signal sequence and direct myocilin to peroxisomes, where they accumulate in the cell, instead of being secreted. Decreased secretion and increased accumulation appear to be the initial steps in myocilin-associated glaucoma.[23]

A study employing iterative pocket & ligand-similarity based approach to virtual ligand screening predicted small molecule binders for the olfactomedin domain of human myocilin. The predictions were subsequently assessed by differential scanning fluorimetry.[24]


MYOC has been shown to interact with the following proteins:[16][25][26][27]


  1. ^ a b c GRCh38: Ensembl release 89: ENSG00000034971 - Ensembl, May 2017
  2. ^ a b c GRCm38: Ensembl release 89: ENSMUSG00000026697 - Ensembl, May 2017
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  6. ^ a b Kubota R, Noda S, Wang Y, Minoshima S, Asakawa S, Kudoh J, et al. (May 1997). "A novel myosin-like protein (myocilin) expressed in the connecting cilium of the photoreceptor: molecular cloning, tissue expression, and chromosomal mapping". Genomics. 41 (3): 360–9. doi:10.1006/geno.1997.4682. PMID 9169133.
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  8. ^ a b c d Ortego J, Escribano J, Coca-Prados M (August 1997). "Cloning and characterization of subtracted cDNAs from a human ciliary body library encoding TIGR, a protein involved in juvenile open angle glaucoma with homology to myosin and olfactomedin". FEBS Letters. 413 (2): 349–53. doi:10.1016/S0014-5793(97)00934-4. PMID 9280311.
  9. ^ a b c Aroca-Aguilar JD, Sánchez-Sánchez F, Ghosh S, Coca-Prados M, Escribano J (June 2005). "Myocilin mutations causing glaucoma inhibit the intracellular endoproteolytic cleavage of myocilin between amino acids Arg226 and Ile227". The Journal of Biological Chemistry. 280 (22): 21043–51. doi:10.1074/jbc.m501340200. PMID 15795224.
  10. ^ Fautsch MP, Vrabel AM, Johnson DH (June 2006). "Characterization of the Felix domesticus (cat) glaucoma-associated protein myocilin". Experimental Eye Research. 82 (6): 1037–45. doi:10.1016/j.exer.2005.08.023. PMID 16289048.
  11. ^ a b Bal RS, Anholt RR (February 1993). "Formation of the extracellular mucous matrix of olfactory neuroepithelium: identification of partially glycosylated and nonglycosylated precursors of olfactomedin". Biochemistry. 32 (4): 1047–53. doi:10.1021/bi00055a008. PMID 8424933.
  12. ^ Nagy I, Trexler M, Patthy L (March 2003). "Expression and characterization of the olfactomedin domain of human myocilin". Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications. 302 (3): 554–61. doi:10.1016/s0006-291x(03)00198-0. PMID 12615070.
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  17. ^ Joe MK, Sohn S, Kim TE, Im JE, Choi YR, Kee C (May 2011). "Analysis of glucocorticoid-induced MYOC expression in human trabecular meshwork cells". Vision Research. 51 (9): 1033–8. doi:10.1016/j.visres.2011.02.014. PMID 21334360.
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  21. ^ a b c Adam MF, Belmouden A, Binisti P, Brézin AP, Valtot F, Béchetoille A, Dascotte JC, Copin B, Gomez L, Chaventré A, Bach JF, Garchon HJ (November 1997). "Recurrent mutations in a single exon encoding the evolutionarily conserved olfactomedin-homology domain of TIGR in familial open-angle glaucoma". Human Molecular Genetics. 6 (12): 2091–7. doi:10.1093/hmg/6.12.2091. PMID 9328473.
  22. ^ Hodapp, Elizabeth (2012-12-05). "Faculty of 1000 evaluation for Myocilin polymorphisms and primary open-angle glaucoma: a systematic review and meta-analysis". F1000 - Post-publication peer review of the biomedical literature. Retrieved 2018-11-09.
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  25. ^ Torrado M, Trivedi R, Zinovieva R, Karavanova I, Tomarev SI (May 2002). "Optimedin: a novel olfactomedin-related protein that interacts with myocilin". Human Molecular Genetics. 11 (11): 1291–301. doi:10.1093/hmg/11.11.1291. PMID 12019210.
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Further reading[edit]