eBook: Viral Vaccine Production — Cultivation of Vero Cells in Packed-Bed Bioreactors

Vero cells are anchorage-dependent cells that are used widely as a platform for viral vaccine production (1). In stirred-tank bioreactors, they are grown ordinarily on microcarriers. Fibra-Cel disks are an alternative attachment matrix because they provide a three-dimensional environment that protects cells from damaging shear forces. However, such disks have not been tested for the cultivation of Vero cells. We tested whether benchtop single-use and glass bioreactors with a packed bed made of Fibra-Cel disks would be suitable for cultivation of Vero cells. To monitor the culture, we quantified glucose and lactate concentrations in the medium daily and inferred from those parameters about cell growth. We concluded that the cells multiplied efficiently in the packed-bed bioreactors. Cell yields in the glass and single-use bioreactors were equivalent. Our results suggest that benchtop, packed-bed bioreactors filled with Fibra-Cel disks are well suited for the cultivation of the Vero cell line — and hence vaccine production — in small batch sizes.

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