The Notch signaling pathway regulates many aspects of embryonic development, as well as differentiation processes and tissue homeostasis in multiple adult organ systems. Disregulation of Notch signaling is associated with several human disorders, including cancer. In the last decade, it became evident that Notch signaling plays important roles within the hematopoietic and immune systems. Notch plays an essential role in the development of embryonic hematopoietic stem cells and influences multiple lineage decisions of developing lymphoid and myeloid cells. Moreover, recent evidence suggests that Notch is an important modulator of T cell-mediated immune responses. In this review, we discuss Notch signaling in hematopoiesis, lymphocyte development, and function as well as in T cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
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