The molecular machinery that regulates the balance between self-renewal and differentiation properties of hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) has yet to be characterized in detail. Here we found that the tetratricopeptide repeat domain 7 A (Ttc7a) protein, a putative scaffold protein expressed by HSC, acts as an intrinsic regulator of the proliferative response and the self-renewal potential of murine HSC in vivo Loss of Ttc7a consistently enhanced the competitive repopulating ability of HSC and their intrinsic capacity to replenish the hematopoietic system after serial cell transplantations, relative to wildtype cells. Ttc7a-deficient HSC exhibit a different transcriptomic profile for a set of genes controlling the cellular response to stress, which was associated with increased proliferation in response to chemically induced stress in vitro and myeloablative stress in vivo Our results therefore revealed a previously unrecognized role of Ttc7a as a critical regulator of HSC stemness. This role is related, at least in part, to regulation of the endoplasmic reticulum stress response.
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