Activation of steroid receptors results in global changes of gene expression patterns. Recent studies showed that steroid receptors control only a portion of their target genes directly, by promoter binding. The majority of the changes are indirect, through chromatin rearrangements. The mediators that relay the hormonal signals to large-scale chromatin changes are, however, unknown. We report here that APRIN, a novel hormone-induced nuclear phosphoprotein has the characteristics of a chromatin regulator and may link endocrine pathways to chromatin. We showed earlier that APRIN is involved in the hormonal regulation of proliferative arrest in cancer cells. To investigate its function we cloned and characterized APRIN orthologs and performed homology and expression studies. APRIN is a paralog of the cohesin-associated Pds5 gene lineage and arose by gene-duplication in early vertebrates. The conservation and domain differences we found suggest, however, that APRIN acquired novel chromatin-related functions (e.g. the HMG-like domains in APRIN, the hallmarks of chromatin regulators, are absent in the Pds5 family). Our results suggest that in interphase nuclei APRIN localizes in the euchromatin/heterochromatin interface and we also identified its DNA-binding and nuclear import signal domains. The results indicate that APRIN, in addition to its Pds5 similarity, has the features and localization of a hormone-induced chromatin regulator.