Phosphoglycerate mutase (PGAM; EC 126.96.36.199) catalyzes the interconversion of 2-phosphoglycerate and 3-phosphoglycerate in the glycolytic pathway. Hereditary muscle PGAM deficiency has been identified in 9 patients with myopathy. All patients had exercise introlerance and 6 had myoglobinuria. Seven of the 9 patients were African-Americans: 5 of them were homozygous for a nonsense mutation, TGG(Trp) to TAG at codon 78; 1 was a compound heterozygote for the nonsense mutation and a missense mutation, GAG(Glu) to GCG(Ala) at codon 89; and 1 could not be tested. The only 2 Caucasian patients, a brother and sister, were homozygous for a different missense mutation, CGG(Arg) to TGG(Trp) at codon 90. Despite the small number of patients identified, these findings indicate that there is a common mutation in African-Americans while there may be molecular genetic heterogeneity in other ethnic groups. © 1995 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.