Gypenosides (Gyp), components of Gynostemma pentaphyllum Makino, were found to induce suppression of human tongue squamous cell carcinoma SCC4 cell growth and induce apoptosis in response to overexpression of reactive oxygen species, calcium (Ca(+2)) and to decrease mitochondrial membrane potential in vitro. In this study, the effect of Gyp on cell migration and invasion of human tongue SCC4 cells was examined. SCC4 cells treated in vitro with Gyp migrated and invaded less than cells treated with phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) as a control. Gyp inhibited migration and invasion by down-regulating the production of RAS, NFkappaB, COX2, ERK1/2 and MMP-9 relative to PBS only. These results show that Gyp inhibits invasion and migration of human tongue SCC4 cells by down-regulating proteins associated with these processes, resulting in reduced metastasis.