Hexokinase type II (HK II) is the key enzyme for maintaining increased glycolysis in cancer cells where it is overexpressed. 3-bromopyruvate (3-BrPA), an inhibitor of HK II, induces cell death in cancer cells. To elucidate the molecular mechanism of 3-BrPA-induced cell death, we used the hepatoma cell lines SNU449 (low expression of HKII) and Hep3B (high expression of HKII). 3-BrPA induced ATP depletion-dependent necrosis and apoptosis in both cell lines. 3-BrPA increased intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) leading to mitochondrial dysregulation. NAC (N-acetyl-L: -cysteine), an antioxidant, blocked 3-BrPA-induced ROS production, loss of mitochondrial membrane potential and cell death. 3-BrPA-mediated oxidative stress not only activated poly-ADP-ribose (PAR) but also translocated AIF from the mitochondria to the nucleus. Taken together, 3-BrPA induced ATP depletion-dependent necrosis and apoptosis and mitochondrial dysregulation due to ROS production are involved in 3-BrPA-induced cell death in hepatoma cells.