[en] In search for new anticancer agents, we have evaluated the antiinvasive and antimigrative properties of recently developed synthetic coumarin derivatives among which two compounds revealed important activity: 3-chlorophenyl 6-acetoxymethyl-2-oxo-2H-1-benzopyran-3-carboxylate and 3-bromophenyl 6-acetoxymethyl-2-oxo-2H-1-benzopyran-3-carboxylate, Both drugs were able to inhibit cell invasion markedly in a Boyden chamber assay, the bromo derivative being more potent than the reference matrix metalloprotease (MMP) inhibitor GI 129471. In vivo, tumour growth was reduced when nude mice grafted with HT 1080 or MDA-MB231 cells were treated i.p. 3 days week(-1) with the bromo coumarin derivative. These effects were not associated with the inhibition of urokinase, plasmin, MMP-2 or MMP-9. The mechanism of action of the drugs remains to be elucidated. However, these two coumarin derivatives may serve as new lead compounds of an original class of antitumour agents.