The repressor element-1 (RE1) silencing transcription factor/neuron-restrictive silencer factor (REST/NRSF) has an irreplaceable role during the differentiation of neurons. REST has multiple splice variants which link to various types of cancer. Previous work had highlighted the role of REST in glioma, where the expression of REST is enhanced. But whether alternative splicing of REST is expressed in glioma has not been described. Here, we show that a specific isoform REST4 is expressed in glioma specimens, and will influence the mRNA level of REST in vivo. Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-γ (PPARγ) agonists have a role of antineoplastic in various tumor cells, which including glioma cells. Moreover, study indicated that PPARγ agonist pioglitazone can promote alternative splicing of REST pre-mRNA. In this study, we selected pioglitazone as a tool drug to explore whether the role of pioglitazone in anti-glioma is mediated by regulating REST expression or promoting alternative splicing of REST in glioma cells. Results show that pioglitazone can inhibit proliferation and induce apoptosis of glioma cell in vitro, which may be mediated by down-regulating REST mRNA level but not by inducing alternative splicing of REST pre-mRNA. Our study firstly reports the expression of REST4 in glioma tissue samples. And we recommend that pioglitazone, which can reduce the expression level of REST, represents a promising drug for therapy of glioma.