The phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) pathway is a major determinant of cell cycling and proliferation. Its deregulation is associated with the development of many cancers. GDC-0941, a potent and selective inhibitor of PI3K, was characterised preclinically in in vitro and in vivo studies. Plasma protein binding was extensive, with free fraction less than 7%, and blood-to-plasma ratio ranged from 0.6 to 1.2 among the species tested. GDC-0941 human hepatic clearance was predicted to be moderate by liver microsomal incubations. GDC-0941 had high permeability in Madin-Darby canine kidney cells. The clearance of GDC-0941 was high in mouse (63.7 mL/min/kg), rat (49.3 mL/min/kg) and cynomolgus monkey (58.6 mL/min/kg), and moderate in dog (11.9 mL/min/kg). The volume of distribution ranged from 2.52 L/kg in rat to 2.94 L/kg in monkey. Oral bioavailability ranged from 18.6% in monkey to 77.9% in mouse. Predicted human clearance and volume of distribution using allometry were 6 mL/min/kg and 2.9 L/kg, respectively. The human efficacious doses were predicted based on results from preclinical pharmacokinetic studies and xenograft models. GDC-0941 preclinical characterisation and predictions of its properties in human supported its progression towards clinical development. GDC-0941 is currently in phase II clinical trials.