Notch in lung development and lung cancer

Semin Cancer Biol. 2004 Oct;14(5):357-64. doi: 10.1016/j.semcancer.2004.04.015.


Although data regarding the role of the Notch pathway in human lung cancer are still limited, fetal lung developmental studies suggest that Notch signaling plays a critical role in regulating airway epithelial development. The moderate hypotrophic phenotype of lungs from animals bearing a Hes1 mutation, and the expression of Notch components in the distal lung bud during branching morphogenesis, together suggest that Notch may play a role in normal lung growth, especially in Clara cell precursors. Non-small cell lung cancers, including adenocarcinoma, appear to actively utilize this conserved developmental pathway. Pharmacologic inhibition of the Notch pathway is a potential experimental approach to lung cancer treatment.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Lung / embryology*
  • Lung Neoplasms / pathology
  • Lung Neoplasms / physiopathology*
  • Membrane Proteins / physiology*
  • Morphogenesis
  • Receptors, Notch


  • Membrane Proteins
  • Receptors, Notch