Metal based drugs have successfully been used in both the detection and treatment of different disease states. The antibacterial features of metal ion silver are well documented. Most recently, metal ion silver has been tested and applied in anticancer activity. The present study observed the cytotoxic, anti-proliferative and apoptotic effects of metal complex silver nitrate in H-ras transformed 5RP7 cell lines for 24 h. In addition, the toxic effects of silver nitrate was investigated on NIH/3T3 primary mouse embryonic fibroblast cells for 24 h. Cytotoxic effects were determined by MTT (3-(4,5-dimethyl-2-thiazolyl)-2,5-diphenyl-2H-tetrazolium bromide) assay. Apoptosis and necrosis were evaluated by flow cytometric analysis (Annexin-V FITC/PI). Caspase-3 activation was researched by flow cytometric analysis. Apoptotic morphology was observed by DAPI staining. Structure and ultra-structure changes of cells were assessed using transmission electron microscopy. The results indicate silver nitrate has high cytotoxicity and a strong capacity to induce apoptosis in H-ras 5RP7 cells. Furthermore silver nitrate was not toxic against NIH/3T3 primary mouse embryonic fibroblast cells at low doses for 24 h.