Aspirin induces apoptotic cell death in various cancer cell lines. Here we showed that silencing of VDAC1 protected HeLa cells from aspirin-induced cell death. Compared to the wild type cells, VDAC1 knocked down cells showed lesser change of mitochondrial membrane potential (δψm), upon aspirin treatment. Aspirin augmented ATP and ionomycin-induced mitochondrial Ca 2+ uptake which was abolished in VDAC1 knocked down cells. Aspirin dissociated bound hexokinase II (HK-II) from mitochondria. Further, aspirin promoted the closure of recombinant human VDAC1, reconstituted in planar lipid bilayer. Taken together, these results imply that VDAC1 serves as a novel target for aspirin. Modulation of VDAC1 is possibly associated with the cell death and anticancer effects of aspirin. © The Author(s) 2017.