Myotonia congenita is a genetic condition that is caused by mutations in the muscle chloride channel gene CLCN1 and characterized by delayed muscle relaxation and muscle stiffness. We here investigate the functional consequences of two novel disease-causing missense mutations, C277R and C277Y, using heterologous expression in HEK293T cells and patch clamp recording. Both mutations reduce macroscopic anion currents in transfected cells. Since hClC-1 is a double-barrelled anion channel, this reduction in current amplitude might be caused by altered gating of individual protopores or of joint openings and closing of both protopores. We used non-stationary noise analysis and single channel recordings to separate the mutants' effects on individual and common gating processes. We found that C277Y inverts the voltage dependence and reduces the open probabilities of protopore and common gates resulting in decreases of absolute open probabilities of homodimeric channels to values below 3%. In heterodimeric channels, C277R and C277Y also reduce open probabilities and shift the common gate activation curve towards positive potentials. Moreover, C277Y modifies pore properties of hClC-1. It reduces single protopore current amplitudes to about two-thirds of wild-type values, and inverts the anion permeability sequence to I(-) = NO(3)(-) >Br(-)>Cl(-). Our findings predict a dramatic reduction of the muscle fibre resting chloride conductance and thus fully explain the disease-causing effects of mutations C277R and C277Y. Moreover, they provide additional insights into the function of C277, a residue recently implicated in common gating of ClC channels.