The function of eukaryotic histone deacetylase (HDAC) has been extensively studied for its critical role in transcriptional regulation and carcinogenesis. However that of the prokaryotic counterpart remains largely unknown. Recently, we cloned HDAC-like protein in Thermus caldophilus GK24 (Tca HDAC) from a genomic library of the microorganism based on homology analysis with human HDAC1. To explore the function of Tca HDAC in mammalian cells, Tca HDAC gene expressing vector was transfected into a human fibrosarcoma cell line, HT1080. Tca HDAC was mainly localized in nuclei of the mammalian cells as a human HDAC1 was, due to an N-terminal HDAC association domain. We further generated histidine-substituted Tca HDAC mutants and investigated their role in biochemical and cellular activity of the enzyme. Tca HDAC mutants exhibited dramatic loss of enzymatic activity and conditioned media (CM) from HT1080 cells transfected with mutant Tca HDAC was unable to stimulate angiogenic phenotypes of endothelial cells in vitro whereas that of wild Tca HDAC did. Collectively, these results demonstrate that a prokaryotic histone deacetylase from T. caldophilus GK24 is functionally active in mammalian cells and its function in gene expression is conserved from prokaryotes to eukaryotes.