Italian Borini, on loan from Liverpool, lifted the gloom at the Stadium of Light when he thundered a 25-metre rocket past a flailing Tim Krul six minutes from time.
It secured a first league win of the season for Sunderland and a first for manager Gus Poyet in his second game in charge.
Sunderland moved up one place to 19th on four points from nine games, relegating Crystal Palace to the bottom.
Newcastle hit back when Frenchman Mathieu Debuchy ghosted in at the far post to fire in Hatem Ben Arfa's low ball into the danger area, his first goal for the club since joining from Lille in January, on 57 minutes.
Later on Sunday, Chelsea can return to second place, two
points behind Arsenal, if they beat visitors Manchester City while Tottenham Hotspur can move within three points of their north London rivals with a home win over Hull City.
- Sports & Recreation
- Paul Dummett
- Tim Krul
- Gus Poyet