Skip to main content
Open Access Publications from the University of California


UCLA Previously Published Works bannerUCLA

Homeoprotein SIX1 compromises antitumor immunity through TGF-β-mediated regulation of collagens


The tumor microenvironment (TME), including infiltrated immune cells, is known to play an important role in tumor growth; however, the mechanisms underlying tumor immunogenicity have not been fully elucidated. Here, we discovered an unexpected role for the transcription factor SIX1 in regulating the tumor immune microenvironment. Based on analyses of patient datasets, we found that SIX1 was upregulated in human tumor tissues and that its expression levels were negatively correlated with immune cell infiltration in the TME and the overall survival rates of cancer patients. Deletion of Six1 in cancer cells significantly reduced tumor growth in an immune-dependent manner with enhanced antitumor immunity in the TME. Mechanistically, SIX1 was required for the expression of multiple collagen genes via the TGFBR2-dependent Smad2/3 activation pathway, and collagen deposition in the TME hampered immune cell infiltration and activation. Thus, our study uncovers a crucial role for SIX1 in modulating tumor immunogenicity and provides proof-of-concept evidence for targeting SIX1 in cancer immunotherapy.

Many UC-authored scholarly publications are freely available on this site because of the UC's open access policies. Let us know how this access is important for you.

Main Content
For improved accessibility of PDF content, download the file to your device.
Current View