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A key feature of actin is its ability to bind and hydrolyze ATP. 8-Chloro-adenosine (8-Cl-Ado), which can be phosphorylated to the moiety of 8-Cl-ATP in living cells, inhibits tumor cell proliferation. Therefore we tested the hypothesis that 8-Cl-Ado can interfere with the dynamic state of actin polymerization. We found that 8-Cl-Ado inhibited the growth of human lung cancer cell line A549 and H1299 in culture, and arrested the target cells in G2/M phase evidenced by fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS). Immunocytochemistry showed that the normal organization of microfilaments was disrupted in 8-Cl-Ado-exposed cells, which is accompanied by the decrease of cell size and the alteration of cell shape, and by aberrant mitosis and apoptosis in targeted cells. Furthermore, in vitro light scattering assays revealed that 8-Cl-ATP could directly inhibit the transition of G-actin to F-actin. DNase I inhibition assays showed that the G/F-actin ratio, a surrogate marker of actin polymerization status in living cells, was significantly increased in 8-Cl-Ado-exposed A549 and H1299 cells, compared to the G/F-actin ratio in unexposed cells. Taken together, these results indicate that 8-Cl-Ado exposure can alter the dynamic properties of actin polymerization, disrupt the dynamic instability or the rearrangement ability of actin filaments. Therefore, our data suggest that 8-Cl-Ado may exert its cytotoxicity at least partly by interfering with the dynamic instability of microfilaments, which may correlate with its inhibitory effects on cell proliferation and cell death.