Metastasis and immune suppression account for the poor prognosis of oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC). YKT6 is a member of the soluble NSF attachment protein receptor (SNARE) family, and the effect of YKT6 in OSCC remains elusive. The purpose of this study was to explore promising prognostic and immune therapeutic candidate biomarkers for OSCC and to understand the expression pattern, prognostic value, immune effects, and biological functions of YKT6. Genes correlated with tumor metastasis and CD8 + T cell levels were identified by weighted gene coexpression network analysis (WGCNA). Next, YKT6 was analyzed through differential expression, prognostic and machine learning analyses. The molecular and immune characteristics of YKT6 were analyzed in independent cohorts, clinical specimens, and in vitro. In addition, we investigated the role of YKT6 at the pan-cancer level. The results suggested that the red module in WGCNA, as a hub module, was associated with lymph node (LN) metastasis and CD8 + T cell infiltration. Upregulation of YKT6 was found in OSCC and linked to adverse prognosis. A nomogram model containing YKT6 expression and tumor stage was constructed for clinical practice. The aggressive and immune-inhibitory phenotypes showed YKT6 overexpression, and the effect of YKT6 on OSCC cell invasion and metastasis in vitro was observed. Moreover, the low expression of YKT6 was correlated with high CD8 + T cell levels and potential immunotherapy response in OSCC. Similar results were found at the pan-cancer level. In total, YKT6 is a promising candidate biomarker for prognosis, molecular, and immune characteristics in OSCC.
Yang Zongcheng, Yan Guangxing, Zheng Lixin, Gu Wenchao, Liu Fen, Chen Wei, Cui Xiujie, Wang Yue, Yang Yaling, Chen Xiyan, Fu Yue, Xu Xin
CD8+ T cell, Oral squamous cell carcinoma, YKT6, immunotherapy, prognosis