We ascertained a child with early onset cerebellar ataxia and identified a novel frameshift deletion, c.359del [p. (Pro120Leufs*2), NM_052865.2] in exon 2 of MGME1 (mitochondrial genome maintenance exonuclease 1) by exome sequencing. Variations in MGME1 have been reported to cause mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) depletion syndrome 11 (MIM #615084) in an earlier work. The phenotype included progressive external ophthalmoplegia, emaciation, respiratory failure and late onset progressive ataxia. However, the child presented here has early onset progressive ataxia, speech delay, microcephaly, cerebellar atrophy and fundus albipunctatus. This is the second report of a mutation in MGME1 and describes a more severe phenotype.