The expression patterns of cancer-related genes in 13 cases of squamous cell lung cancer (SCC) were characterized and compared with those in normal lung tissue and 13 adenocarcinomas (AC), the other major type of nonsmall cell lung cancer (NSCLC). cDNA array was used to screen the gene expression levels and the array results were verified using a real-time reverse-transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Thirty-nine percent of the 25 most upregulated and the 25 most downregulated genes were common to SCC and AC. Of these genes, DSP, HMGA1 (alias HMGIY), TIMP1, MIF, CCNB1, TN, MMP11, and MMP12 were upregulated and COPEB (alias CPBP), TYROBP, BENE, BMPR2, SOCS3, TIMP3, CAV1, and CAV2 were downregulated. The expression levels of several genes from distinct protein families (cytokeratins and hemidesmosomal proteins) were markedly increased in SCC compared with AC and normal lung. In addition, several genes, overexpressed in SCC, such as HMGA1, CDK4, IGFBP3, MMP9, MMP11, MMP12, and MMP14, fell into distinct chromosomal loci, which we have detected as gained regions on the basis of comparative genomic hybridization data. Our study revealed new candidate genes involved in NSCLC.