Breast cancer (BC) stem cells (CSCs) resist treatment and can exist as dormant cells in tissues such as the bone marrow (BM). Years before clinical diagnosis, BC cells (BCCs) could migrate from the primary site where the BM niche cells facilitate dedifferentiation into CSCs. Additionally, dedifferentiation could occur by cell autonomous methods. Here we studied the role of Msi 1, a RNA-binding protein, Musashi I (Msi 1). We also analyzed its relationship with the T-cell inhibitory molecule programmed death-ligand 1 (PD-L1) in CSCs. PD-L1 is an immune checkpoint that is a target in immune therapy for cancers. Msi 1 can support BCC growth through stabilization of oncogenic transcripts and modulation of stem cell-related gene expression. We reported on a role for Msi 1 to maintain CSCs. This seemed to occur by the differentiation of CSCs to more matured BCCs. This correlated with increased transition from cycling quiescence and reduced expression of stem cell-linked genes. CSCs co-expressed Msi 1 and PD-L1. Msi 1 knockdown led to a significant decrease in CSCs with undetectable PD-L1. This study has implications for Msi 1 as a therapeutic target, in combination with immune checkpoint inhibitor. Such treatment could also prevent dedifferentiation of breast cancer to CSCs, and to reverse tumor dormancy. The proposed combined treatment might be appropriate for other solid tumors.