Figure 1: A schematic representation of lateral inhibition by a Notch ligand. A Notch ligand secreting cell releases a Notch ligand that binds to the Notch receptor of a neighboring cell. The action inhibits the activity of Atoh1 through Notch target gene Hes1 in the cell, leading to the formation of an absorptive cell. While a Notch ligand secreting cell has a high activity of Atoh1, leading to the differentiation of a goblet cell.