To characterize the biological role of Kin17 protein, a mammalian nuclear protein which participates in the response to UV and ionizing radiation and binds to curved DNA, EBV-derived vectors carrying (Mm)Kin17 cDNA were constructed and transfected in tumorigenic cells harboring different p53 profiles (HeLa, H1299, and HCT116) and in immortalized HEK 293 cells. (Mm)Kin17 protein expression induced a tremendous decrease in cell proliferation of the three tumorigenic cell lines 2 weeks after transfection. Transfection of HEK 293 cells with an pEBVCMV(Mm)Kin17 plasmid gave rise to numerous (Mm)Kin17-expressing cells which constantly disappeared with time, preventing the establishment of (Mm)Kin17-expressing cells. Several independent clones were isolated from HEK 293 cells carrying a pEBVMT(Mm)Kin17 vector. The two clones described here (B223.1 and B223.2) exhibited different (Mm)Kin17 protein levels and displayed a gradual decrease in their proliferative capacities. In B223.1 cells, the basal expression of (Mm)Kin17 greatly reduced plating efficiency and cell growth. B223.1 cell morphology was altered, with numerous round-shaped cells whose spreading on the culture support was hampered. We observed giant multinucleated cells or cells containing micronuclei-like structures and/or multilobed nuclei. To conclude, (Mm)Kin17 overexpression reduced the proliferation of tumorigenic cells independently of their p53 status and modified cell growth and cell morphology of established HEK 293 cells producing (Mm)Kin17 protein. It is likely that (Mm)Kin17 may interfere with DNA replication.