This study was to examine the inhibitory effect of matrine on the proliferation and metastasis of gastric cancer cells, and to explore the possible mechanisms involved in these processes. MTT was used to evaluate the proliferation ability of SGC7901 cells. A two and three-dimensional cell migration assay were performed to determine the effect of matrine on the migration of SGC7901 cells. Then, the changes of the uPA protein and other possible signal molecules were detected by western blot. We found that the proliferation ability of SGC 7901 cells was suppressed by matrine (p<0.05), and the average cell migration velocity was also significantly inhibited by matrine when compared to the control in a two-dimensional cell migration assay. In addition, SGC7901cells treated with matrine (50μg/ml) migrated less than the control cells in a three-dimensional cell migration assay. At the meantime, the decreased uPA protein expression in SGC7901 cells treated with matrine was observed, and the PI3K/Akt pathway was inhibited. These results suggested that matrine can inhibit the proliferation and metastasis of gastric cancer cells through the PI3K/Akt/uPA pathway, indicating that matrine might be a potential molecular target for treatment of gastric carcinoma.