The oncogene cyclin D1 is highly expressed in many breast cancers and, despite its proliferation-activating properties, it has been linked to a less malignant phenotype. To clarify this observation, we focused on two key components of malignant behavior, migration and proliferation, and observed that quiescent G(0)/G(1) cells display an increased migratory capacity compared to cycling cells. We also found that the down-regulation of cyclin D1 in actively cycling cells significantly increased migration while also decreasing proliferation. When analyzing a large set of premenopausal breast cancers, we observed an inverse proliferation-independent link between cyclin D1 and tumor size and recurrence, suggesting that this protein might abrogate infiltrative malignant behavior in vivo. Finally, gene expression analysis after cyclin D1 down-regulation by siRNA confirmed changes in processes associated with migration and enrichment of our gene set in a metastatic poor prognosis signature. This novel function of cyclin D1 illustrates the interplay between tumor proliferation and migration and may explain the attenuation of malignant behavior in breast cancers with high cyclin D1 levels.