The Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS) is caused by a 5-6 Mbp de novo deletion on the paternal chromosome 15, maternal uniparental disomy 15 or an imprinting defect. All three lesions lead to the lack of expression of imprinted genes that are active on the paternal chromosome only: MKRN3, MAGEL2, NDN, C15orf2, SNURF-SNRPN and more than 70 C/D box snoRNA genes (SNORDs). The contribution to PWS of any of these genes is unknown, because no single gene mutation has been described so far. We report on two patients with PWS who have an atypical deletion on the paternal chromosome that does not include MKRN3, MAGEL2 and NDN. In one of these patients, NDN has a normal DNA methylation pattern and is expressed. In another patient, the paternal alleles of these genes are deleted as the result of an unbalanced translocation 45,X,der(X)t(X;15)(q28;q11.2). This patient is obese and mentally retarded, but does not have PWS. We conclude that a deficiency of MKRN3, MAGEL2 and NDN is not sufficient to cause PWS.