We identify Drosophila TACC (D-TACC) as a novel protein that is concentrated at centrosomes and interacts with microtubules. We show that D-TACC is essential for normal spindle function in the early embryo; if D-TACC function is perturbed by mutation or antibody injection, the microtubules emanating from centrosomes in embryos are short and chromosomes often fail to segregate properly. The C-terminal region of D-TACC interacts, possibly indirectly, with microtubules, and can target a heterologous fusion protein to centrosomes and microtubules in embryos. This C-terminal region is related to the mammalian transforming, acidic, coiled-coil-containing (TACC) family of proteins. The function of the TACC proteins is unknown, but the genes encoding the known TACC proteins are all associated with genomic regions that are rearranged in certain cancers. We show that at least one of the mammalian TACC proteins appears to be associated with centrosomes and microtubules in human cells. We propose that this conserved C-terminal 'TACC domain' defines a new family of microtubule-interacting proteins.