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Reviewed January 2008

What is the official name of the AGXT gene?

The official name of this gene is “alanine-glyoxylate aminotransferase.”

AGXT is the gene's official symbol. The AGXT 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 AGXT gene?

The AGXT gene provides instructions for making a liver enzyme called alanine-glyoxylate aminotransferase. Inside liver cells, this enzyme is found in peroxisomes, structures that are important for several cellular activities such as ridding the cell of toxic substances and helping to break down certain fats. Peroxisomes contain several enzymes that are imported from the internal fluid of the cell (cytosol). Enzymes that are transferred into peroxisomes have a special arrangement of building blocks (amino acids) at one end of the enzyme that serves as a shipping address. In the peroxisome, alanine-glyoxylate aminotransferase converts a compound called glyoxylate to the amino acid glycine, which is later used for making enzymes and other proteins.

How are changes in the AGXT gene related to health conditions?

primary hyperoxaluria - caused by mutations in the AGXT gene

Researchers have identified about 50 AGXT mutations that cause type 1 primary hyperoxaluria. In some type 1 primary hyperoxaluria cases, alanine-glyoxylate aminotransferase enzyme activity is partially or entirely absent because of a mutation. As a result of this enzyme shortage, glyoxylate accumulates and is converted to a compound called oxalate instead of glycine. Oxalate, in turn, combines with calcium to form calcium oxalate, which the body cannot readily eliminate. Deposits of calcium oxalate can lead to kidney stones, kidney damage or failure, and injury to other organs, which are characteristic features of primary hyperoxaluria.

In other people with type 1 primary hyperoxaluria, the alanine-glyoxylate aminotransferase enzyme is misplaced within the cell. Misplacement occurs when certain mutations combine with a natural variation (polymorphism) in the gene. In most cases, a mutation replaces the amino acid glycine with the amino acid arginine at position 170 in the enzyme (written as Gly170Arg or G170R). This mutation occurs with a polymorphism that replaces the amino acid proline with the amino acid leucine at position 11 (written as Pro11Leu or P11L). The combined effect of the mutation and the polymorphism alters the structure of alanine-glyoxylate aminotransferase and changes the cellular shipping address of the enzyme. Instead of locating in peroxisomes, the enzyme is misdelivered to mitochondria, the energy-producing centers of cells. Even though the enzyme retains some of its activity, it cannot make contact with glyoxylate, which is located in peroxisomes. As a result, glyoxylate accumulates, leading to the signs and symptoms of primary hyperoxaluria.

Where is the AGXT gene located?

Cytogenetic Location: 2q37.3

Molecular Location on chromosome 2: base pairs 240,868,745 to 240,879,119

The AGXT gene is located on the long (q) arm of chromosome 2 at position 37.3.

The AGXT gene is located on the long (q) arm of chromosome 2 at position 37.3.

More precisely, the AGXT gene is located from base pair 240,868,745 to base pair 240,879,119 on chromosome 2.

See How do geneticists indicate the location of a gene? in the Handbook.

Where can I find additional information about AGXT?

You and your healthcare professional may find the following resources about AGXT 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 AGXT gene or gene products?

  • AGT
  • AGT1
  • AGXT1
  • alanine-glyoxylate aminotransferase (oxalosis I; hyperoxaluria I; glycolicaciduria; serine-pyruvate aminotransferase)
  • PH1
  • serine-pyruvate aminotransferase
  • SPAT
  • SPT
  • TLH6

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 AGXT?

acids ; alanine ; amino acid ; arginine ; calcium ; cell ; compound ; cytosol ; enzyme ; gene ; glycine ; injury ; kidney ; kidney stones ; leucine ; mitochondria ; mutation ; peroxisomes ; polymorphism ; proline ; serine ; toxic

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.

Reviewed: January 2008
Published: November 23, 2015