--- - |2 Summary Gastric cancer accounts for a sizeable proportion of global cancer mortality with high morbidity and poor prognosis. Kinesin superfamily proteins (KIFs) are microtubule‐dependent motor proteins that function as oncogenes in cancer cells, it has been discovered in recent years. Kinesin family member 2a (KIF2A), a member of the KIFs, has received attention for its role in carcinogenesis and its prognostic value in several human cancers such as breast cancer, colorectal cancer, and squamous cell carcinoma. However, the role of KIF2A in human gastric cancer remains unknown. In this study we aimed to explore the expression and biological functions of KIF2A in human gastric cancer cells, as well as to reveal its potential action mechanism. First, we found that KIF2A was markedly increased in gastric cancer cells (MKN‐28, MKN‐45, NCI‐N87 and SGC‐7901) compared to normal gastric mucosa epithelial cells (GES‐1). Then KIF2A was successfully silenced in MKN‐45 and SGC‐7901 cells to facilitate further research into its function. We discovered that KIF2A silencing can significantly inhibit the growth and invasion of MKN‐45 and SGC‐7901 cells in a time‐independent manner, accompanying a decreased expression of Membrane type 1‐matrix metalloproteinase (MT1‐MMP). When MT1‐MMP was reintroduced into MKN‐45 and SGC‐7901 cells in the KIF2A‐siRNA group, only invasion inhibition effects on MKN‐45 and SGC‐7901 cells induced by KIF2A silencing can be reversed. In conclusion, our study reveals that down‐regulation of KIF2A can inhibit gastric cancer cell invasion by suppressing MT1‐MMP. - Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology and Physiology, Volume 45, Issue 10, Page 1010-1018, October 2018.