Emerging data indicate that actin dynamics is associated with ciliogenesis. However, the underlying mechanism remains unclear. Here we find that nuclear distribution gene C (NudC), an Hsp90 co-chaperone, is required for actin organization and dynamics. Depletion of NudC promotes cilia elongation and increases the percentage of ciliated cells. Further results show that NudC binds to and stabilizes cofilin 1, a key regulator of actin dynamics. Knockdown of cofilin 1 also facilitates ciliogenesis. Moreover, depletion of either NudC or cofilin 1 causes similar ciliary defects in zebrafish, including curved body, pericardial edema and defective left-right asymmetry. Ectopic expression of cofilin 1 significantly reverses the phenotypes induced by NudC depletion in both cultured cells and zebrafish. Thus, our data suggest that NudC regulates actin cytoskeleton and ciliogenesis by stabilizing cofilin 1.Cell Research advance online publication 25 December 2015; doi:10.1038/cr.2015.152.