Pdcd4 (programmed cell death 4) has been known as a tumour suppressor gene and potential target for anticancer therapies for several years. Initially, Pdcd4 was identified as a gene that is up-regulated during apoptosis, but its precise role still remains to be defined. However, there is increasing evidence that Pdcd4 levels influence transcription, as well as translation, modulate different signal transduction pathways and might act as a tumour suppressor. Interestingly, recent data suggest that Pdcd4 function may depend on cell type and/or genetic background. This review summarizes the current knowledge regarding the function and regulation of Pdcd4.