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Reviewed February 2009
What is the official name of the GJA1 gene?
The official name of this gene is “gap junction protein alpha 1.”
GJA1 is the gene's official symbol. The GJA1 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 GJA1 gene?
The GJA1 gene provides instructions for making a protein called connexin43, which is one of 21 connexin proteins in humans. Connexins play a role in cell-to-cell communication by forming channels, or gap junctions, between cells. Gap junctions allow for the transport of nutrients, charged particles (ions), and other small molecules that carry necessary communication signals between cells. Connexin43 is found in many human tissues such as the eyes, skin, bone, ears, heart, and brain.
Does the GJA1 gene share characteristics with other genes?
The GJA1 gene belongs to a family of genes called GJ (gap junction proteins (connexins)).
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 GJA1 gene related to health conditions?
Genetics Home Reference provides information about critical congenital heart disease, which is also associated with changes in the GJA1 gene.
Where is the GJA1 gene located?
Cytogenetic Location: 6q22.31
Molecular Location on chromosome 6: base pairs 121,435,577 to 121,449,744
(Homo sapiens Annotation Release 107, GRCh38.p2) (
The GJA1 gene is located on the long (q) arm of chromosome 6 at position 22.31.
More precisely, the GJA1 gene is located from base pair 121,435,577 to base pair 121,449,744 on chromosome 6.
See How do geneticists indicate the location of a gene? in the Handbook.
Where can I find additional information about GJA1?
You and your healthcare professional may find the following resources about GJA1 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 GJA1 gene or gene products?
See How are genetic conditions and genes named? in the Handbook.
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 GJA1?
You may find definitions for these and many other terms in the Genetics Home Reference Glossary.
See also Understanding Medical Terminology.
References (13 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.