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During hematopoiesis, red blood cells originate from the hematopoietic stem cell reservoir. Although the regulation of erythropoiesis and globin expression has been intensively investigated, the underlining mechanisms are not fully understood, including the interplay between transcription factors and epigenetic factors. Here, we uncover that the Mbd2-free NuRD chromatin remodeling complex potentiates erythroid differentiation of proerythroblasts via managing functions of the CP2c complexes. We found that both Mbd2 and Mbd3 expression is downregulated during differentiation of MEL cells in vitro and in normal erythropoiesis in mouse bone marrow, and Mbd2 downregulation is crucial for erythropoiesis. In uninduced MEL cells, the Mbd2-NuRD complex is recruited to the promoter via Gata1/Fog1, and, via direct binding through p66α, it acts as a transcriptional inhibitor of the CP2c complexes, preventing their DNA binding and promoting degradation of the CP2c family proteins to suppress globin gene expression. Conversely, during erythropoiesis in vitro and in vivo, the Mbd2-free NuRD does not dissociate from the chromatin and acts as a transcriptional coactivator aiding the recruitment of the CP2c complexes to chromatin, and thereby leading to the induction of the active hemoglobin synthesis and erythroid differentiation. Our study highlights the regulation of erythroid differentiation by the Mbd2-CP2c loop.

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Nucleic Acids Research, v. 46, issue 10, p. 4933-4949