February 2009

Disposable Bioreactors in Cell Culture-Based Upstream Processing

    During the last 10 years, cost pressures and the changing requirements for bioreactors in the modern pharmaceutical industry have resulted in the increased use of disposable bioreactors in both R&D and manufacturing. Numerous studies have demonstrated their efficiency in cell culture-based upstream processing at small- and middle-volume scales. As shown in Figure 1, disposable bioreactors with culture volumes between 10 mL and 2 m3 are most widely used for cell proliferation, screening experiments, the production of therapeutic agents…

Quality by Design: Current Regulatory Status and Future Challenges

    Drug manufacturers face the very real challenge of being both innovative and efficient — having to get products to market quickly — whilst at the same time facing existing hurdles that can limit both of these goals. To manufacture products innovatively and quickly, while at the same time reducing costs and ensuring quality, drug manufacturers must find ways to build quality into their processes. Doing so will aid in product approvals, cut down on poor design issues and…

Purifying a Recalcitrant Therapeutic Recombinant Protein with a Mixed-Mode Chromatography Sorbent

Mixed-mode chromatography sorbents can save time and money by reducing the number of steps required to purify recombinant proteins. They also have the potential to purify proteins that single-mode sorbents cannot. As the term mixed mode suggests, these sorbents contain ligands that offer multiple modes of interaction. Although mixed-mode sorbents are used extensively in solid-phase extraction for high-pressure liquid chromatography (HPLC) sample preparation — and to a more limited extent in analytical HPLC — these resins are generally unsuitable for…

Extractables and Leachables from Single-Use Disposables

Evaluating single-use systems for extractables and leachables is new territory for many end-users. This paper presents a risk-based approach for evaluating extractables and leachables from single-use systems. Approaches are described that have been accepted by various regulatory agencies utilizing risk assessments and sound scientific principles. Biopharmaceutical processing materials must be evaluated to determine whether they impact the final drug product with regard to safety and efficacy. For single-use and reusable systems, this usually leads to evaluations that demonstrate compatibility with…

Non-Invasive Sensors as Enablers of “Smart” Disposables

    Disposable bioprocessing has come of age. Economic and regulatory conditions are driving the widespread adoption of disposable equipment at all stages of bioprocessing. This review considers the entire bioprocess chain and assesses the status of disposables. In particular, we focus on the current availability and need for additional sensors that will enable the disposable process to be integrated — in compliance — with the latest Process Analytical Technologies. Traditional bioprocessing is highly compartmentalized into upstream and downstream operations.…

The Maturation of the Biomanufacturing Industry

    In my opening editorial, I referred to an industry in transition. This is being driven by challenges that are by no means unique to biotech: all other industry sectors are experiencing similar pressures. We are seeing the impact in terms of factory design, manufacturing technologies, validation and business processes; these are all themes that have been addressed in this supplement. The big innovation in terms of manufacturing systems has been the wholesale acceptance of disposable manufacturing technologies during…

MAb Contaminant Removal with a Multimodal Anion Exchanger

Monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) constitute ∼30% of the biopharmaceutical products currently under development (1). An increasing demand for MAbs during the past decade has led to intense development of high-expression cell cultures (2). Today, it is possible to see titers of 4–5 g/L, and expression levels as high as 15 g/L and greater have been reported. As a consequence, demand has increased for more efficient downstream processes. That demand, combined with its potential for reducing time-to-market, has increased interest in the…

Better Positioned Than Ever

    In June 2007, Sartorius AG acquired the French company, Stedim S.A., and a global solution provider for the biopharmaceutical industry was created. Since then, the new company — Sartorius Stedim Biotech (SSB) — has entered into collaborations with a number of other key industry players, including Metroglas, Bayer Technology Services GmbH and the recently acquired Wave Biotech AG to bring technologies such as single-use bioreactors, UVC irradiation and the first disposable–integrated electrochemical pH sensor into its rapidly expanding…

IBC’s 18th InternationalBiological Assay Development and Valiation

Biological assays continue to be considered the “quality” assay for biopharmaceuticals. Companies often ignore their importance and find themselves on clinical hold in phase 2 — or worse, in phase 3 — because their biological assays do not meet current expectations. (Usually there are performance, robustness, and/or specificity problems.) This is the conference to find out the newest technical, regulatory, and practical trends for the all-important biological assays. IBC’s 18th International Bioassay meeting has it all. Get the tools you…

Disposable pH Sensors

    This paper describes the design, development and validation procedure for a novel, single-use gamma-stable electrochemical pH probe jointly developed by Sartorius Stedim Biotech SA and Metroglas. This new, single-use pH sensor offers a range of pH measurements (from 0 to 11 with ±0.1 precision) and features a one-point calibration process in its storage solution that provides a fast and easy pre- and post-use sensor performance check. Also described is a specific encapsulation device designed to integrate the pH…