Recently, hematopoietic stem cells were purified to homogeneity from mouse bone marrow. The protein structure of Sca-1, the cell surface antigen used in the isolation of hematopoietic stem cells, is described here. It is shown that the Sca-1 antigen is a member of the Ly-6 antigen family. The anti-Sca-1 antibody was used in immunohistochemistry experiments to define the structures in several tissues that had previously been shown to contain Ly-6 antigens. In thymus, spleen, and kidney, specific staining of parenchymal cells can be demonstrated, whereas only vasculature reacts with anti-Sca-1 in brain, heart, and liver and possibly in lung.