Molecular Genetics Overview of Primary Mitochondrial Myopathies

Ignazio Giuseppe Arena, Alessia Pugliese, Sara Volta, Antonio Toscano, Olimpia Musumeci*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review


Mitochondrial disorders are the most common inherited conditions, characterized by defects in oxidative phosphorylation and caused by mutations in nuclear or mitochondrial genes. Due to its high energy request, skeletal muscle is typically involved. According to the International Workshop of Experts in Mitochondrial Diseases held in Rome in 2016, the term Primary Mitochondrial Myopathy (PMM) should refer to those mitochondrial disorders affecting principally, but not exclusively, the skeletal muscle. The clinical presentation may include general isolated myopathy with muscle weakness, exercise intolerance, chronic ophthalmoplegia/ophthalmoparesis (cPEO) and eyelids ptosis, or multisystem conditions where there is a coexistence with extramuscular signs and symptoms. In recent years, new therapeutic targets have been identified leading to the launch of some promising clinical trials that have mainly focused on treating muscle symptoms and that require populations with defined genotype. Advantages in next‐generation sequencing techniques have substantially improved diagnosis. So far, an increasing number of mutations have been identified as responsible for mitochondrial disorders. In this review, we focused on the principal molecular genetic alterations in PMM. Accordingly, we carried out a comprehensive review of the literature and briefly discussed the possible approaches which could guide the clinician to a genetic diagnosis.
Original languageEnglish
Article number632
JournalClinical Chemistry
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2022
Externally publishedYes

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