From Notch signaling to fine-grained patterning: Modeling meets experiments

Curr Opin Genet Dev. 2011 Dec;21(6):732-9. doi: 10.1016/j.gde.2011.07.007. Epub 2011 Aug 19.


Notch signaling is the canonical signaling pathway between neighboring cells. It plays an important role in fine-grained patterning processes such as the formation of checkerboard-like differentiation patterns and sharp boundaries between developing tissues. While detailed information about many of the genes and proteins involved have been identified, we still lack a quantitative mechanistic understanding of these processes. Here we discuss several recent studies that provide novel insights into Notch-dependent patterning by combining mathematical models with quantitative experimental results. Such approaches allow identification of mechanisms and design principles controlling how patterns are generated in a reproducible and robust manner.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Body Patterning / genetics*
  • Cell Differentiation / genetics
  • Drosophila / embryology
  • Drosophila / genetics
  • Drosophila / metabolism
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental
  • Models, Biological*
  • Protein Processing, Post-Translational
  • Receptors, Notch / genetics
  • Receptors, Notch / metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction*


  • Receptors, Notch