A revisionist history of adult marrow stem cell biology or ‘they forgot about the discard’
The adult marrow hematopoietic stem cell biology has largely been based on studies of highly purified stem cells. This is unfortunate because during the stem cell purification the great bulk of stem cells are discarded. These cells are actively proliferating. The final purified stem cell is dormant and not representative of the whole stem cell compartment. Thus, a large number of studies on the cellular characteristics, regulators and molecular details of stem cells have been carried on out of nonrepresented cells. Niche studies have largely pursued using these purified stem cells and these are largely un-interpretable. Other considerations include the distinction between baseline and transplant stem cells and the modulation of stem cell phenotype by extracellular vesicles, to cite a non-inclusive list. Work needs to proceed on characterizing the true stem cell population.