Dysadherin is a recently found anti-adhesion molecule, therefore detection and down regulation of its expression is promising in cancer treatment. The up-regulation of dysadherin contributes to colon cancer recurrence and metastasis. Dysadherin also has connections with cytoskeletal proteins and it can cause alterations in the organisation of filamentous actin (F-actin) in metastatic cancers. In this study, hypericin (HYP)-mediated photodynamic therapy (PDT) was performed in two different grade colon adenocarcinoma cell lines HT-29 (Grade I) and Caco-2 (Grade II). Cells were treated with 0.04, 0.08 or 0.15 mu M HYP concentrations and irradiated with (4 J/cm(2)) fluorescent lamps. The effects of HYP was examined 16 and 24 h after the activation. We investigated for the first time the effect of HYP-mediated PDT on the expression of dysadherin and F-actin organisation. According to the results, HYP mediated PDT caused a decrease in gene expression and immunofluorescence staining of dysadherin and an increase in actin stress fibers and actin aggregates in HT-29 and Caco-2 cell lines. Besides, cytotoxicity, number of floating cells and apoptotic index changed depending on the cell type, HYP concentration and incubation time. We have demonstrated for the first time that dysadherin and F-actin could be target molecules for HYP-mediated PDT in HT-29 and Caco-2 colon cancer cell lines.