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Reviewed April 2006

What is the official name of the ANK2 gene?

The official name of this gene is “ankyrin 2, neuronal.”

ANK2 is the gene's official symbol. The ANK2 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 ANK2 gene?

The ANK2 gene provides instructions for making a protein called ankyrin-2. Ankyrin-2 is part of a larger family of ankyrins, which interact with many other types of proteins in cells throughout the body. Ankyrins ensure that certain proteins are inserted into the correct locations in the cell membrane and are anchored to the cell's structural framework (the cytoskeleton). Ankyrins play key roles in important cellular functions including movement, growth, and division.

The ankyrin-2 protein is active in many cell types, particularly in the brain and in heart (cardiac) muscle. This protein mainly targets ion channels, which are complexes of proteins that transport charged atoms (ions) across cell membranes. In the heart, the flow of ions (such as sodium, potassium, and calcium) through ion channels is critical for signaling the heart to beat and for maintaining a normal heart rhythm. Ankyrin-2 inserts these channels into their proper locations in the cell membrane so they can regulate the flow of ions into and out of cardiac muscle cells.

Does the ANK2 gene share characteristics with other genes?

The ANK2 gene belongs to a family of genes called ANKRD (ankyrin repeat domain containing).

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 ANK2 gene related to health conditions?

Romano-Ward syndrome - associated with the ANK2 gene

At least 10 mutations in the ANK2 gene have been associated with a variety of heart problems. It is unclear whether these mutations cause Romano-Ward syndrome or lead to another heart condition with some of the same signs and symptoms. Most often, mutations in the ANK2 gene lead to abnormalities of the heart's natural pacemaker (the sinoatrial node), a heart rate that is slower than normal (bradycardia), a disruption in the rhythm of the heart's lower chambers (ventricular arrhythmia), and an increased risk of fainting (syncope) and sudden death. Other symptoms, including seizures, dizziness, and migraine headaches, also have been reported in people with ANK2 mutations.

Each of the identified mutations in the ANK2 gene changes a single protein building block (amino acid) in a critical region of the ankyrin-2 protein. As a result, the altered protein cannot target ion channels to their correct locations in cardiac muscle cells or other types of cells. Although the channels are produced normally by the cell, they are unable to function if they are not inserted correctly into the cell membrane. This loss of functional channels in the heart disrupts the normal flow of ions, which alters the heart's normal rhythm and probably interferes with other aspects of cardiac function.

Where is the ANK2 gene located?

Cytogenetic Location: 4q25-q27

Molecular Location on chromosome 4: base pairs 112,818,083 to 113,383,740

(Homo sapiens Annotation Release 107, GRCh38.p2) (NCBIThis link leads to a site outside Genetics Home Reference.)

The ANK2 gene is located on the long (q) arm of chromosome 4 between positions 25 and 27.

The ANK2 gene is located on the long (q) arm of chromosome 4 between positions 25 and 27.

More precisely, the ANK2 gene is located from base pair 112,818,083 to base pair 113,383,740 on chromosome 4.

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

Where can I find additional information about ANK2?

You and your healthcare professional may find the following resources about ANK2 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 ANK2 gene or gene products?

  • ankyrin-2, nonerythrocytic
  • ankyrin B
  • ankyrin, brain
  • ankyrin, nonerythroid
  • brank-2
  • LQT4

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 ANK2?

amino acid ; arrhythmia ; bradycardia ; calcium ; cardiac ; cell ; cell membrane ; critical region ; cytoskeleton ; fainting ; gene ; ions ; long QT syndrome ; migraine ; muscle cells ; pacemaker ; potassium ; protein ; sinoatrial node ; sodium ; syncope ; syndrome

You may find definitions for these and many other terms in the Genetics Home Reference Glossary.

See also Understanding Medical Terminology.

References (9 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: April 2006
Published: February 8, 2016