We developed an antisense peptide nucleic acid (PNA) targeted against a unique sequence in the terminus of the 5'-UTR of N-myc, designed for selective inhibition of NMYC in neuroblastoma cells. Fluorescent microscopy showed carrier-free delivery of the PNA to two human neuro-blastoma cell lines: GI-LI-N (N-myc-amplified) and GI-CA-N (N-myc-unamplified). Only in the former, PNA treatment determined 70% cell-viability reduction (at 48 h). In N-myc-amplified GI-LI-N cells, the PNA determined NMYC-translation inhibition (Western blotting), accumulation of cells in G1, induction of differentiation and apoptosis. Selectivity of the PNA was demonstrated by altering three point mutations. These findings should encourage development of a PNA-based tumor-specific agent for neuroblastoma (or other neoplasms) with N-myc overexpression.