Previously we showed that motility-related protein (MRP-1) is an antigen recognized by monoclonal antibody (mAb) M31-15 inhibiting cell motility and that the sequence of MRP-1 coincides with that of CD9. In the present study, plasmid was constructed in which human MRP-1/CD9 cDNA is expressed under the control of the Abelson murine leukemia virus promoter sequence. The expression plasmid for MRP-1/CD9 was introduced into Chinese hamster ovary cells, human lung adenocarcinoma cell line MAC10 (MRP-1 positive), and human myeloma cell line ARH77 (MRP-1 negative). All of the MRP-1/CD9 (over)expressing clones obtained from these transfected cells showed suppressed cell motility (penetration and phagokinetic track assays) depending on the degree of expression of MRP-1/CD9. Overexpression of MRP-1/CD9 by MAC10 cells resulted in the suppression of cell motility (maximally 73%) associated with considerable inhibition of the cell growth (maximally 48%). However, the inhibition of the growth of MAC10 cells by mAb M31-15 was < 17% at an antibody concentration of 1-5 micrograms/ml, which inhibits cell motility by > 90%. These results suggest that MRP-1/CD9 directly regulates cell motility and may also affect cell growth. Effects on metastasis by the expression of MRP-1 CD9 were investigated with mouse melanoma BL6 cells-BALB/c nu/nu mouse system. Metastatic potential of all transformants expressing MRP-1/CD9 was lower than that of parent BL6 cells.