Therapeutic potential of Toll-like receptor 9 activation

Nat Rev Drug Discov. 2006 Jun;5(6):471-84. doi: 10.1038/nrd2059.


In the decade since the discovery that mouse B cells respond to certain unmethylated CpG dinucleotides in bacterial DNA, a specific receptor for these 'CpG motifs' has been identified, Toll-like receptor 9 (TLR9), and a new approach to immunotherapy has moved into the clinic based on the use of synthetic oligodeoxynucleotides (ODN) as TLR9 agonists. This review highlights the current understanding of the mechanism of action of these CpG ODN, and provides an overview of the preclinical data and early human clinical trial results using these drugs to improve vaccines and treat cancer, infectious disease and allergy/asthma.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Asthma / drug therapy
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Communicable Diseases / drug therapy
  • CpG Islands
  • Humans
  • Hypersensitivity / drug therapy
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Oligodeoxyribonucleotides / pharmacology
  • Oligodeoxyribonucleotides / therapeutic use*
  • Structure-Activity Relationship
  • Toll-Like Receptor 9 / agonists*
  • Vaccines


  • CPG-oligonucleotide
  • Oligodeoxyribonucleotides
  • Toll-Like Receptor 9
  • Vaccines