This study intended to investigate the effects of miR-3188 on breast cancer and to reveal the possible molecular mechanisms. miR-3188 was upregulated and TUSC5 was downregulated in breast cancer tissues and MCF-7 cells compared to normal tissue and MCF-10 cells. After MCF-7 cells were transfected with miR-3188 inhibitor, cell proliferation and migration were inhibited, whereas apoptosis was promoted. Luciferase reporter assay suggested that TUSC5 was a target gene of miR-3188. In addition, miR-3188 overexpression increased the p-p38 expression, while miR-3188 suppression decreased the p-p38 expression significantly. miR-3188 regulated breast cancer progression via the p38 MAPK signaling pathway. In conclusion, miR-3188 affects breast cancer cell proliferation, apoptosis, and migration by targeting TUSC5 and activating the p38 MAPK signaling pathway. miR-3188 may serve as a potential therapeutic agent for the treatment of breast cancer.