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TLR-7 Based Drug Discovery
Toll like receptor (TLR), the sensors of innate immunity
How could fruit fly with only innate immune system detect and fight against infections?
In 1996, French scientist Jules Hoffmann and his co-workers infected fruit flies with bacteria or fungi, he discovered that Toll mutants died “because they could not mount an effective defense”. He concluded that Toll receptor was involved in sensing pathogenic microorganisms and activate immune system against them.
In 1998, American scientist Bruce Beutler and his co-workers discovered that mice resistant to LPS had a mutation in a gene that was similar to the Toll gene of the fruit fly. Thus mammals use similar molecules (Toll-like receptor, TLR) to activate innate immunity when encountering pathogenic microorganisms. Subsequently, around a dozen different TLRs have been identified in humans and mice. Each one of them recognizes certain types of molecules common in microorganisms, then activate immune system.
Our scientists at Conjugenix discovered a series of small molecules that specifically activate Toll-like receptor 7 (TLR-7), as if the cell has been attacked by pathogens. Furthermore, we discovered that when these molecules were conjugated to a disease specific (or associated) molecule (such as tumor associated antigen), our molecule could activate and direct the immune system to mount attack on the disease cell (such as tumor cell).
Based on these discoveries, we are currently developing vaccines in various therapeutic areas, such as oncology, infectious disease, metabolic disease, and neurodegenerative disease, on our ImmuStimu Vaccine Platform. We would like to offer this vaccine platform to the research community and welcome collaborations from industry and academia, to speed drug discovery.
We also discovered that conjugation of our compounds to antigens could significantly increase the antibody production. This is particularly useful when the antigen has weak or no immunogenecity. Currently, we offer this “Vaccine Adjuvant” service to increase your antibody production (conjugate your antigens, or even provide antigen-conjugates from scratch). Please contact us for free consultation and free sample.