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Reviewed March 2007
What is the official name of the TYR gene?
The official name of this gene is “tyrosinase.”
TYR is the gene's official symbol. The TYR 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 TYR gene?
The TYR gene provides instructions for making an enzyme called tyrosinase. This enzyme is located in melanocytes, which are specialized cells that produce a pigment called melanin. Melanin is the substance that gives skin, hair, and eyes their color. Melanin is also found in the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye (the retina), where it plays a role in normal vision.
Tyrosinase is responsible for the first step in melanin production. It converts a protein building block (amino acid) called tyrosine to another compound called dopaquinone. A series of additional chemical reactions convert dopaquinone to melanin in the skin, hair follicles, the colored part of the eye (the iris), and the retina.
How are changes in the TYR gene related to health conditions?
Where is the TYR gene located?
Cytogenetic Location: 11q14.3
Molecular Location on chromosome 11: base pairs 89,177,858 to 89,295,759
(Homo sapiens Annotation Release 107, GRCh38.p2) (
The TYR gene is located on the long (q) arm of chromosome 11 at position 14.3.
More precisely, the TYR gene is located from base pair 89,177,858 to base pair 89,295,759 on chromosome 11.
See How do geneticists indicate the location of a gene? in the Handbook.
Where can I find additional information about TYR?
You and your healthcare professional may find the following resources about TYR 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 TYR 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 TYR?
You may find definitions for these and many other terms in the Genetics Home Reference Glossary.
See also Understanding Medical Terminology.
References (7 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.