Purpose: N-terminal acetyltransferases modify proteins by adding an acetyl moiety to the first amino acid and are vital for protein and cell function. The NatB complex acetylates 20% of the human proteome and is composed of the catalytic subunit NAA20 and the auxiliary subunit NAA25. In five individuals with overlapping phenotypes, we identified recessive homozygous missense variants in NAA20. Methods: Two different NAA20 variants were identified in affected individuals in two consanguineous families by exome and genome sequencing. Biochemical studies were employed to assess the impact of the NAA20 variants on NatB complex formation and catalytic activity. Results: Two homozygous variants, NAA20 p.Met54Val and p.Ala80Val (GenBank: NM_016100.4, c.160A>G and c.239C>T), segregated with affected individuals in two unrelated families presenting with developmental delay, intellectual disability, and microcephaly. Both NAA20-M54V and NAA20-A80V were impaired in their capacity to form a NatB complex with NAA25, and in vitro acetylation assays revealed reduced catalytic activities toward different NatB substrates. Thus, both NAA20 variants are impaired in their ability to perform cellular NatB-mediated N-terminal acetylation. Conclusion: We present here a report of pathogenic NAA20 variants causing human disease and data supporting an essential role for NatB-mediated N-terminal acetylation in human development and physiology. Graphical Abstract: [Figure not available: see fulltext.].