Small cell lung carcinomas (SCLCs) represent highly aggressive tumors with an overall five-year survival rate in the range of 5 to 10%. Here, we show that four out of five SCLC cell lines reversibly develop a neuron-like phenotype on extracellular matrix constituents such as fibronectin, laminin or thrombospondin upon staurosporine treatment in an RGD/integrinmediated manner. Neurite-like processes extend rapidly with an average speed of 10 mm per hour. Depending on the cell line, staurosporine treatment affects either cell cycle arrest in G2/M phase or induction of polyploidy. Neuron-like conversion, although not accompanied by alterations in the expression pattern of a panel of neuroendocrine genes, leads to changes in protein expression as determined by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis. It is likely that SCLC cells already harbour the complete molecular repertoire to convert into a neuron-like phenotype. More extensive studies are needed to evaluate whether the conversion potential of SCLC cells is suitable for therapeutic interventions.