Aurora-A kinase is a one of the key regulators during mitosis progression. Aurora-A kinase is a potential target for anticancer therapies because overexpression of Aurora-A, which is frequently observed in some human cancers, results in aberrant mitosis leading to chromosomal instability and possibly tumorigenesis. MK-5108 is a novel small molecule with potent inhibitory activity against Aurora-A kinase. Although most of the Aurora-kinase inhibitors target both Aurora-A and Aurora-B, MK-5108 specifically inhibited Aurora-A kinase in a panel of protein kinase assays. Inhibition of Aurora-A by MK-5108 in cultured cells induced cell cycle arrest at the G(2)-M phase in flow cytometry analysis. The effect was confirmed by the accumulation of cells with expression of phosphorylated Histone H3 and inhibition of Aurora-A autophosphorylation by immunostaining assays. MK-5108 also induced phosphorylated Histone H3 in skin and xenograft tumor tissues in a nude rat xenograft model. MK-5108 inhibited growth of human tumor cell lines in culture and in different xenograft models. Furthermore, the combination of MK-5108 and docetaxel showed enhanced antitumor activities compared with control and docetaxel alone-treated animals without exacerbating the adverse effects of docetaxel. MK-5108 is currently tested in clinical trials and offers a new therapeutic approach to combat human cancers as a single agent or in combination with existing taxane therapies.