Abstract STK, the Src tyrosine kinase homologous of the fresh water polyp hydra, is a key component of the signal transduction system for cell differentiation in this organism. Its activity is strongly increased 6 h after decapitation, and the inhibition of its activity with PP2/AG1879 prevents head development. We generated STK − polyps by using double-stranded RNA interference; STK activity of those polyps is blocked through time. STK RNAi silenced animals could not regenerate the head, but the foot, and could not reproduce asexually. The silencing of STK causes the development of ectopic heads in decapitated polyps in the first third of their body. Some head-specific genes, like Ks1, HyTcf, and Hybra1, seem to be regulated by the signaling pathway mediated by STK because their expression is modified in the STK − polyps. These findings support an important function for STK in the initial commitment of cells to develop head structures in hydra.