The precise role of alpha-actinin-4 encoding gene (ACTN4) is not very well understood. It has been reported to elicit tumor suppressor activity and to regulate cellular motility. To further assess the function of human ACTN4, we studied a lung carcinoma cell line expressing a mutated alpha-actinin-4, which is recognized as a tumor antigen by autologous CD8(+) cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTL). Confocal immunofluorescence microscopy indicated that, while wild-type (WT) alpha-actinin-4 stains into actin cytoskeleton and cell surface ruffles, the mutated protein is only dispersed in the cytoplasm of the lung carcinoma cells. This loss of association with the cell surface did not appear to correlate with a decrease in in vitro alpha-actinin-4 crosslinking to filamentous (F)-actin. Interestingly, experiments using cell lines stably expressing ACTN4 demonstrated that as opposed to WT gene, mutant ACTN4 was unable to inhibit tumor cell growth in vitro and in vivo. Moreover, the expression of mutant alpha-actinin-4 resulted in the loss of tumor cell capacity to migrate. The identification of an inactivating mutation in ACTN4 emphasizes its role as a tumor suppressor gene and underlines the involvement of cytoskeleton alteration in tumor development and metastasis.