Susceptibility to motion sickness (MS) varies considerably among humans. However, the cause of such variation is unclear. Here, we used a classical genetic approach to obtain mouse strains highly sensitive and resistant to MS (SMS and RMS). Proteomics analysis revealed substantially lower swiprosin-1 expression in SMS mouse brains. Inducing MS via rotary stimulation decreased swiprosin-1 in the mouse brains. Swiprosin-1 knockout mice were much more sensitive to motion disturbance. Immunohistochemistry revealed strong swiprosin-1 expression in the vestibular nuclei (VN). Over-expressing swiprosin-1 in the VN of SMS mice decreased MS susceptibility. Down-regulating swiprosin-1 in the VN of RMS mice by RNAi increased MS susceptibility. Additional in vivo experiments revealed decreased swiprosin-1 expression by glutamate via the NMDA receptor. Glutamate increased neuronal excitability in SMS or swiprosin-1 knockout mice more prominently than in RMS or wild-type mice. These results indicate that swiprosin-1 in the VN is a critical determinant of the susceptibility to MS.