Ornithine decarboxylase antizyme (OAZ) has recently emerged as a potential therapeutic target in various malignant tumors because it plays vital roles in cellular functions including proliferation, differentiation, apoptosis and genomic stability. Therefore, there is a significant interest in discovering its function in chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). Firstly, OAZ1 mRNA was measured by qRT-PCR in 43 cases with CML and 23 controls, and we demonstrated that it is significantly down-regulated in CML patients. To further understand its functions in CML pathogenesis, OAZ1 was overexpressed, and the human leukemia PCR array analysis was used to monitor the expression of key genes commonly involved in leukemia development, classification and therapeutic response. We found several favorable up-regulation factors including CXCL10, DAPK1 and IKZF3. In conclusion, OAZ1 may be a useful therapeutic target in CML due to its potential ability to induce erythroid differentiation and cell apoptosis. These functions were proven to be associated with several gene changes that were directly or indirectly caused by OAZ1. The mechanism of how OAZ1 affects other genes remains to be elucidated.