In 1997 for the first time, survivin was described by Amborsini et al. as an anti-apoptotic protein. Subsequentstudies revealed that survivin is a multifunctional protein that plays critical roles in several crucial cell processessuch as apoptosis, cell cycle, chromosome movement, mitosis and cellular stress responses. Moreover, it’s overexpressionin cancer cells versus normal cells is associated with chemotherapy resistance, increased tumorrecurrence, and shorter patient survival. All of these features make survivin a promising target for cancertherapy. Here, we review the potential characteristics of survivin as a tumor marker.