Cardiomyocyte dedifferentiation may be an important source of proliferating cardiomyocytes facilitating cardiac repair. Cardiomyocyte dedifferentiation and proliferation induced by oncostatin-M (OSM) is characterized by sarcomere degeneration. However, the mechanism underlying sarcomere degeneration remains unclear. We hypothesized that this process may involve matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2), a key protease localized at the sarcomere in cardiomyocytes. We tested the hypothesis that MMP-2 is involved in the sarcomere degeneration that characterizes cardiomyocyte dedifferentiation. Confocal immunofluorescence and biochemical methods were used to explore the role of MMP-2 in OSM-induced dedifferentiation of neonatal rat ventricular myocytes (NRVM). OSM caused a concentration- and time-dependent loss of sarcomeric α-actinin and troponin-I in NRVM. Upon OSM-treatment, the mature sarcomere transformed to a phenotype resembling a less-developed sarcomere, i.e., loss of sarcomeric proteins and Z-disk transformed into disconnected Z bodies, characteristic of immature myofibrils. OSM dose dependently increased MMP-2 activity. Both the pan-MMP inhibitor GM6001 and the selective MMP-2 inhibitor ARP 100 prevented sarcomere degeneration induced by OSM treatment. OSM also induced NRVM cell cycling and increased methyl-thiazolyl-tetrazolium (MTT) staining, preventable by MMP inhibition. These results suggest that MMP-2 mediates sarcomere degeneration in OSM-induced cardiomyocyte dedifferentiation and thus potentially contributes to cardiomyocyte regeneration.