Notch is a vitally important signalling receptor controlling cell fate determination and pattern formation in numerous ways during development of both invertebrate and vertebrate species. An intriguing pathway for the Notch signal has emerged where, after ligand-dependent proteolysis, an intracellular fragment of the receptor itself translocates to the nucleus to regulate gene expression. The nuclear activity of the Notch intracellular domain is linked to complexes regulating chromatin organization through histone deacetylation and acetylation. To allow the Notch signal to be deployed in numerous contexts, many different mechanisms have evolved to regulate the level, duration and spatial distribution of Notch activity. Regulation occurs at multiple levels including patterns of ligand and receptor expression, Notch-ligand interactions, trafficking of the receptor and ligands, and covalent modifications including glycosylation, phosphorylation and ubiquitination. Several Notch regulatory proteins have conserved domains that link them to the ubiquitination pathway, and ubiquitination of the Notch intracellular domain has recently been linked to its degradation. Different proteolytically derived isoforms of Notch have also been identified that may be involved in alternative Notch-dependent signals or regulatory mechanisms, and differences between the four mammalian Notch homologues are beginning to be appreciated.