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Hematopoietic Stem Cells (HSCs) are cells that have the ability to self-renewal and differentiate into all of hematopoietic lineages. The lack of donors and unavailable efficient protocols for ex vivo expansion of HSCs, are obstacles in successful cell therapies. MicroRNAs (also refer as miRNAs or miRs) have significant roles in hematopoiesis; they can effect on HSCs expansion, maintaining undifferentiated state, self-renewal and differentiation. Recently attentions have been given to these small regulatory molecules to utilize them in order to expand HSCs. Using bioinformatics analysis we identified Sall4 as putative target of miR-15b and miR-219-5p. Relative expression levels of miRNAs and Sall4 were evaluated by qRT-PCR. Here we show 247-fold and 4.2-fold increasing Sall4 expression level compared to control group in CD34+ cells nucleofected by anti-miR-15b and anti-miR-219-5p, respectively. These data showed that anti-miR-15b can promote clonogenic capacity of HSCs and also we found that miR-15b alone was able to increase the number of CD34+HSCs in vitro by more than 2 fold by targeting Sall4. Moreover, level of CD34 marker in HSCs nucleofected by anti-miR-15b increased more than 50 %. Our analysis showed no statistically difference in mRNA level of Sall4 after nucleofection of anti-miR-219-5p. Sall4 is a factor capable of enhancing HSC expansion significantly. We demonstrated that inhibition of miR-15b can enhance ex vivo expansion of UCB-derived HSCs and also expression of Sall4 allowed expansion and preserve self- renewal of CD34+ HSCs.
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