The role of uPA in tissue remodeling and cell migration is already well established. In addition, uPA was reported to stabilize p53, a key cell cycle control, DNA repair and apoptosis initiation protein. We aimed to determine the role of uPA-uPAR signaling towards cell survival or apoptosis in human adult cardiac myocytes (HACM). HACM were stimulated with uPA and DNA damage was inflicted by incubating cells with 200 M H2O2. To analyze for apoptotic cells we applied TUNEL staining. Oxidative damage foci were analyzed by staining for 8-oxoguanine base pairs. In vivo qPCR analysis from RNA extracted from failing human hearts demonstrated a close relation of uPA with apoptosis and the p53 pathway. Furthermore, we observed a close correlation of uPA and p53 protein in homogenized tissue lysates. In vitro studies revealed that uPA preincubation protected HACM from oxidative damage induced cell death and reduced oxidative damage foci. uPA protection is independent of its catalytic activity, as the amino terminal fragment of uPA showed similar protection. A key enzyme for repairing oxidative DNA damage is the p53 target hOGG1. We found a significant increase of hOGG1 after pretreatment of HACM with uPA. Knockdown of hOGG1 completely abrogated the protective effect of uPA. We conclude that uPA might have a tissue protective role in human hearts besides its role in tissue remodeling. Tissue protection is mediated by the DNA repair protein hOGG1. This might be beneficial during tissue remodeling and thus could be a target for therapeutic approaches in the diseased heart.