The role of Toll-like receptor 4 polymorphisms in vaccine immune response

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Toll-like receptors (TLRs) are a class of pattern recognition receptors that are deputed to recognise a range of molecular structures in pathogens. One of the most studied members of this family is the TLR4, which is essential for the signalling of lipopolysaccharide. The gene encoding for TLR4 is highly polymorphic and this genetic variability may explain in part the interindividual variability observed in several clinical setting, including the response to vaccination. Herein, we review and systematise the available scientific evidence about the effect of TLR4 polymorphisms on vaccine response, including approved prophylactic, new therapeutic cancer vaccines and recently approved vaccine adjuvants. Data reviewed in this analysis indicate that TLR4 polymorphisms significantly affect vaccine response. If these results are confirmed by further analyses, the use of these genetic biomarkers may become a useful tool to tailor vaccination in specific subsets of patients.

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