(-)-β-hydrastine is one of the main active components of the medicinal plant, Hydrastis canadensis, which is used in many dietary supplements intended to enhance the immune system. However, whether (-)-β-hydrastine affects the tumor signaling pathway remains unexplored. In the present study, we found that (-)-β-hydrastine inhibited the kinase activity of p21-activated kinase 4 (PAK4), which is involved in the regulation of cytoskeletal reorganization, cell proliferation, gene transcription, oncogenic transformation and cell invasion. In the present study, (-)-β-hydrastine suppressed lung adenocarcinoma cell proliferation by inhibiting expression of cyclin D1/D3 and CDK2/4/6, leading to cell cycle arrest at the G1 phase, in a PAK4 kinase-dependent manner. Moreover, inhibition of PAK4 kinase activity by (-)-β-hydrastine also promoted the early apoptosis of lung adenocarcinoma cells through the mitochondrial apoptosis pathway. In addition, (-)-β-hydrastine significantly suppressed the migration and invasion of human lung adenocarcinoma cells in conjunction with concomitant blockage of the PAK4/LIMK1/cofilin, PAK4/SCG10 and PAK4/MMP2 pathways. All of these data indicate that (-)-β-hydrastine, as a novel PAK4 inhibitor, suppresses the proliferation and invasion of lung adenocarcinoma cells. Taken together, these results provide novel insight into the development of a PAK4 kinase inhibitor and a potential therapeutic strategy for lung cancer.