Manufacturing

Facilities of the Future: Intelligent Design and Control Enable Quality, Efficiency, and Good Citizenship

Today’s biomanufacturers need to be able to add capacity and capability quickly; provide increased supply service to customers on demand; and streamline the flows of personnel, traffic, utilities, and materials throughout bioprocess facilities. And companies need to be flexible enough to subtract capacity and retool quickly to produce new or different products. Many future facilities will be automated to some extent and use robotics in manufacturing. With personalized medicine on the rise, bioprocessors can benefit from colocation with academic research…

Flexibility, Automation, and Leadership: Drug-Sponsor Perspectives on Modern Biomanufacturing Facility Design

The title of this featured report — Smart(er) Facilities — came about in conversations with our KNect365 colleagues as they worked to plan this year’s BPI West conference, which took place 19–22 March 2018 in San Francisco, CA. For decades, biopharmaceutical facilities have incorporated cutting-edge designs for supporting processes, products, and human development. Each year, design innovations are rewarded for creating workspaces that facilitate both worker comfort and essential movement of promising drug candidates toward commercialization. In that context, biomanufacturing…

Partnerships for Progress: Supplier Perspectives on Facilities of the Future

Biomanufacturers are constantly tasked with making their products ever more efficiently with ever increasing quality. As major advancements come in biomanufacturing technology, companies find themselves in need of “smarter,” more flexible facilities than ever before. Recently, I asked several industry leaders for their thoughts on some criteria for smarter designs, including why there is such a demand: Cristina Amorim (vice president of facilities, EHS, and sustainability in the life sciences group of Thermo Fisher Scientific) Scott Battist (vice president, general…

Ensuring the Integrity of Single-Use Containers: Providing Robustness, Science, and Helium-Based Technology with a Detection Limit of 2 μm

Identifying the greatest defect size, both for liquid leaks and microbial ingress, is a fundamental step toward protecting the integrity of single-use systems (SUS) under real process conditions. Integrity testing of such systems may become a prerequisite in the future because they are used in the most critical process steps, with detection limits correlating to liquid leaks and microbial ingress. Such testing guarantees the sterility of drug substances and drug products packaged in single-use systems and, therefore, enhance patient safety.…

eBook: Innovations in CRISPR Technology — A Perspective on Research and Bioprocess Applications

One of the fastest growing areas in genome engineering is research using the powerful editing tool of clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR). When paired with the Cas9 (CRISPR-associated protein 9), an RNA-guided DNA endonuclease enzyme from Streptococcus pyogenes, the site-specific prokaryotic immune system can be used to cut and manipulate DNA strands in cells of patients with genetic diseases to treat, or in some cases, prevent such diseases. Within the past couple of years, CRISPR has been shown…

Driving Cell Therapy Innovation: Applying Key Lessons from the Evolution and Commercialization of Protein-Based Therapies

After many trials and errors — and milestones — regenerative medicine has become a mainstream part of the biopharmaceutical industry, supported by at least 670 companies and clinics of all sizes. But many experiences in the protein-based industry segment can be leveraged to further improve successful commercialization of advanced therapies. At the 2017 Biotech Week Boston conference, BioProcess International editor in chief Anne Montgomery hosted a panel of industry cell therapy experts to discuss key lessons that can be gleaned…

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…

eBook: Alternative Delivery of Biologics — Underdogs Pursue Roads Less Traveled

A number of failures in development of noninjectable delivery methods for therapeutic proteins have caused numerous development programs to crash and burn along with investors’ hopes, dreams, and cash. Most everyone reading BioProcess International is familiar with the issues and challenges: Needles hurt and involve risks to both caregivers and patients. Injections often require administration by trained personnel in specialized settings. But alternative delivery methods are fraught with greater challenges related to dosing, bioavailability (particularly for oral dosing), and inherent…

Implementation of the BPOG Extractables Testing Protocols: Comparing USP and BPOG Extractables Data for Autoclaved Polyethersulfone Filters

Benefits of single-use technologies over traditional stainless-steel solutions in biopharmaceutical manufacturing include reductions in set-up times, cleaning/cleaning validation costs, elimination of cross-contamination risks, and smaller operating footprints. But despite increasing adoption of such systems, concerns remain about extractable and leachable (E&L) compounds from plastic single-use systems (SUS) components with the potential to compromise the efficacy and safety of final drug products. Such concerns are magnified by the growing number of SUS suppliers and the complex supply chain for SUS and…

Extend the Life of Your Facility: Flexibility Allows for Biopharmaceutical Process Innovation

For an industry built on constant change, there’s a surprising disconnect between the continuous drive for innovation and the inflexible facilities that house biopharmaceutical operations. Some of today’s facilities are built for today’s use with little thought about tomorrow’s. The typical approach for a new process or drug coming to market is to start with a brand-new building and permanently embedded equipment designed around that specific process. That approach is expensive and unsustainable. New bioproduction facilities can cost US$500 million…