Innovating Immunology

We believe the immune system is a valuable tool that can be harnessed to prevent and treat disease. We are developing cutting-edge immunotherapies and vaccines based on Toll-Like Receptor (TLR) biology and its ability to control and modulate the immune system. Our technology focuses on addressing the challenges of treating infectious diseases, inflammatory diseases and cancer.

The innate immune system drives the adaptive immune response:

The immune system protects the body against invading pathogens and cancer. The innate immune system acts as the first line of defense and primes the induction of long-lasting adaptive immunity which both fights off the first attack and retains memory of the encounter to react to future attacks.

Of the many cell types of the innate immune system, the dendritic cell is instrumental for orchestrating the adaptive immune system’s response. These cells do this by releasing cytokines and by presenting foreign or “non-self” antigens - whether from cancer cells or pathogens - to T cells.

Toll-like receptors (TLRs):

  • Toll-like receptors (TLRs) are expressed on dendritic cells and other innate immune cells, and are among the most important receptors for eliciting a response to the presence of invading pathogens.  
  • Our programs focus on stimulating TLR9 to enhance adaptive response to vaccines, promote killing of cancer cells and, and modulate allergic inflammation.
    • In addition, Dynavax is developing therapeutic agents that activate two other important TLRs, TLR7 and TLR8; which in humans offers the potential for activating a broader range of antigen-presenting cell types. This portfolio of novel and potent activators is enabling Dynavax to explore potential treatments for cancer immunotherapies as well as other vaccines.