ARTICLE ABSTRACTIn breast cancer, increased expression of the cytoskeletal adaptor protein Kindlin-1 has been linked to increased risks of lung metastasis, but the functional basis is unknown. Here, we show that in a mouse model of polyomavirus middle T antigen–induced mammary tumorigenesis, loss of Kindlin-1 reduced early pulmonary arrest and later development of lung metastasis. This phenotype relied on the ability of Kindlin-1 to bind and activate β integrin heterodimers. Kindlin-1 loss reduced α4 integrin–mediated adhesion of mammary tumor cells to the adhesion molecule VCAM-1 on endothelial cells. Treating mice with an anti–VCAM-1 blocking antibody prevented early pulmonary arrest. Kindlin-1 loss also resulted in reduced secretion of several factors linked to metastatic spread, including the lung metastasis regulator tenascin-C, showing that Kindlin-1 regulated metastatic dissemination by an additional mechanism in the tumor microenvironment. Overall, our results show that Kindlin-1 contributes functionally to early pulmonary metastasis of breast cancer.Significance: These findings provide a mechanistic proof in mice that Kindin-1, an integrin-binding adaptor protein, is a critical mediator of early lung metastasis of breast cancer. Cancer Res; 78(6); 1484–96. ©2018 AACR.