Embedded Particles in Single-Use Bags: Risk to Bag Integrity and Drug Product Purity, or Only a Cosmetic Defect?

When using single-use systems (SUS) to process biopharmaceuticals, preventing drug product contamination from extractables and leachables (E&Ls) and embedded particulate matter (gel particles) in the polymer films used to make bioprocess bags is critical. Using a pressure burst test to assess film integrity, Sartorius Stedim Biotech’s Klaus Wormuth and colleagues compared Flexboy and Flexsafe samples with gel-particle-free materials to assess their potential for contamination. The results showed that only large (2–4 mm2) gel particles affected the burst test results, concluding that the risk from embedded gel particles to single-use film integrity and drug purity is very low and that E&Ls were highly unlikely to reach concentrations that would require a chemical analysis.

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