Toll-like receptors (TLRs) are evolutionarily conserved pattern-recognition molecules resembling the toll proteins that mediate antimicrobial responses in Drosophila. These proteins recognize different microbial products during infection and serve as an important link between the innate and adaptive immune responses.
TLR6 was first identified as a close homolog of TLR1, sharing 69% sequence identify. Like TLR1, TLR6 can form heterodimers with TLR2, and these TLR6:TLR2 dimers coordinate macrophage activation by Gram positive bacteria and the yeast cell wall particle zymosan. Activation of these complexes not only initiates proinflammatory cascades, but also can lead to apoptotic responses.
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