Previously, we reported that the prepared resveratrol (RSV) loaded gelatin nanoparticles (GNPs) possessed enhanced anticancer effect than free RSV in non-small cell lung carcinoma cells and Swiss albino mice. The present study aims to explore the relevant mechanism of cell death induced by the combination of RSV-GNPs in NCI-H460 cells. To increase its bioavailability and anticancer efficacy, we have encapsulated RSV-GNPs by Coacervation method. The detailed methods of preparation and characterization of RSV-GNPs were reported in our earlier publication. RSV-GNPs treated cells showed a further increased level of lipid peroxidative markers, i.e. TBARS and LHP in NCI-H460 cells. Activities of antioxidant enzymes SOD, CAT, GPx and GSH levels were decreased upon the treatment with RSV-GNPs in NCI-H460 cells. The nuclear fragmentation was evaluated by DAPI staining and data showed condensed apoptotic bodies upon treatment with the combination of RSV-GNPs compared to RSV alone treatment group. In addition, cell death induced by RSV-GNPs was mainly due to apoptosis which was characterized by a nuclear DNA fragmentation in a ladder-pattern was obtained from the genomic DNA analysis. Moreover, Western blotting analysis showed that apoptosis induced by RSV-GNPs is associated with the increased Bax, p53, p21, caspase-3 protein levels, and decreased Bcl-2 and NF-κB proteins expression, which indicates the involvement of mitochondria-dependent apoptosis in the anticancer efficacy of RSV-GNPs in NCI-H460 cells. It was also found that this enhanced anticancer efficacy of RSV-GNPs induced cell arrest in the G0/G1 phase of cell cycle. Taken together, the results of our study clearly suggested that the cell death induced by the combination of RSV-GNPs would involve alteration in expression of p53, p21, caspase-3, Bax, Bcl-2 and NF-κB, indicating oxidative mechanism in NCI-H460 cells. Based on these results, it is concluded that GNPs is an ideal way to deliver RSV because of its high loading efficiency and superior efficacy in NCI-H460 cells.