Notch is involved in the cell fate determination of many cell lineages. The intracellular region (RAMIC) of Notch1 transactivates genes by interaction with a DNA binding protein RBP-J. We have compared the activities of mouse RAMIC and its derivatives in transactivation and differentiation suppression of myogenic precursor cells. RAMIC comprises two separate domains, IC for transactivation and RAM for RBP-J binding. Although the physical interaction of IC with RBP-J was much weaker than with RAM, transactivation activity of IC was shown to involve RBP-J by using an RBP-J null mutant cell line. IC showed differentiation suppression activity that was generally comparable to its transactivation activity. The RBP-J-VP16 fusion protein, which has strong transactivation activity, also suppressed myogenesis of C2C12. The RAM domain, which has no other activities than binding to RBP-J, synergistically stimulated transactivation activity of IC to the level of RAMIC. The RAM domain was proposed to compete with a putative co-repressor for binding to RBP-J because the RAM domain can also stimulate the activity of RBP-J-VP16. These results taken together, indicate that differentiation suppression of myogenic precursor cells by Notch signalling is due to transactivation of genes carrying RBP-J binding motifs.