[en] Vimentin expression in human mammary epithelial MCF10A cells was examined as a function of their migratory status using an in vitro wound-healing model. Analysis of the trajectories of the cells and their migratory speeds by time lapse-video microscopy revealed that vimentin mRNA and protein expression were exclusively induced in cells at the wound's edge which were actively migrating towards the center of the lesion. Actin labeling showed the reorganization of actin filaments in cells at the wound's edge which confirmed the migratory phenotype of this cell subpopulation. Moreover, the vimentin protein disappeared when the cells became stationary after wound closure. Using cells transfected with the vimentin promoter controlling the green fluorescent protein gene, we also demonstrated the specific activation of the vimentin promoter in the migratory cells at the wound's edge. Transfection of the antisense vimentin cDNA into MCF10A cells clearly reduced both their ability to express vimentin and their migratory speed. Taken together, these observations demonstrate that vimentin is transiently associated with, and could be functionally involved in, the migratory status of human epithelial cells.