[en] In response to DNA damage, p53 activates a G1 cell cycle checkpoint, in part through induction of the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor p21(Waf1/Cip1). Here we report the identification of a new direct p53 target, Ptprv (or ESP), encoding a transmembrane tyrosine phosphatase. Ptprv transcription is dramatically and preferentially increased in cultured cells undergoing p53-dependent cell cycle arrest, but not in cells undergoing p53-mediated apoptosis. This observation was further confirmed in vivo using a Ptprv null-reporter mouse line. A p53-responsive element is present in the Ptprv promoter and p53 is recruited to this site in vivo. Importantly, while p53-dependent apoptosis is intact in mice lacking Ptprv, Ptprv-null fibroblasts and epithelial cells of the small intestine are defective in G1 checkpoint control. Thus, Ptprv is a new direct p53 target and a key mediator of p53-induced cell cycle arrest. Finally, Ptprv loss enhances the formation of epidermal papillomas after exposure to chemical carcinogens, suggesting that Ptprv acts to suppress tumor formation in vivo.