Manufacturing

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…

Conference Report: The Drug Product Track at 2017’s BioProcess International Conference and Exhibition in Boston, MA

At the Hynes Convention Center in Boston, MA, during Knect365’s “Biotech Week Boston” in late September of 2017, one track of the BioProcess International Conference focused on drug products, fill–finish, and formulations. Presenters represented a number of major biopharmaceutical companies — AbbVie, Amgen, Biogen, Eli Lilly, Genentech (Roche), GlaxoSmithKline, Johnson & Johnson, Lonza, Pfizer, and Sanofi — as well as suppliers Bosch, Merck (MilliporeSigma), ReForm, and Single-Use Support. They focused on predictive modeling, quality by design (QbD) and process analytics,…

A Vaccine Case Study: Qualifying Redundant Disconnection Technologies As Container-Closure Systems for Long-Term Storage and Shipping

The expanding complexity of biopharmaceutical manufacturing puts increasing pressure on single-use systems to meet the demands of the modern industry’s global footprint. Individual sites within a given organization often are specialized to a fixed number of “modular” process steps (1). Such product segregation increases plant efficiency and output while making the best of staff competencies. But it also can create an additional need for transportation of intermediate or bulk drug substance (BDS) over long distances. Freezing generally is used to…

eBook: Bioinks for Bioprinting — Three-Dimensional Printing in Research and Medicine

Three-dimensional (3D) printing is one method of digital biomanufacturing for both basic biological research and translational, clinical applications. The medical field has used it to create such constructions as 3D surgical models for preoperative planning, to assist surgeons in their procedure preparations, which improves postsurgical outcomes. Examples here include generation of cleft-palate models (1), orthopedic applications (2), and cardiovascular surgical planning (3). Other forms of 3D printing for biological applications — such as 3D bioprinting — go beyond such surgical…

eBook: Challenges Facing Biosimilar Entries into US Markets

Since the 2009 enactment of the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act (BPCIA) (1), the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has licensed six biosimilar products under PHS 351(k) and approved one product under FD&C 505 (b)(2). It also provided complete response letters (CRLs) to four biologics license application (BLA) filings (Table 1) (2). By comparison, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) has approved 31 biosimilar products (3) and refused or withdrawn about five. There is no doubt that US market…

Therapeutic IgG-Like Bispecific Antibodies: Modular Versatility and Manufacturing Challenges, Part 1

Antibody-based immunotherapy has advanced significantly since 1986, when the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the first mouse monoclonal antibody (MAb) for clinical use: Orthoclone OKT-3 (muromonab-CD3). In the intervening years, researchers have applied the tools of genetic engineering to clone immunoglobulin G (IgG) genes into a number of expression vectors. In the 1990s, the bioprocess industry was able to produce fully human antibodies in cultured cells. As of June 2017, the FDA and the European Medicines Agency (EMA)…

Advanced Control Strategies at Biotech Week Boston

Attendees at this year’s Biotech Week Boston (24–28 September) had the opportunity to participate in several preconference symposia on the first day, including one on advanced control strategies for bioprocessing and biomanufacturing. Chaired by William Whitford (GE Healthcare), the session included presentations from Dan Kopec (Sartorius Stedim Data Analytics), Markus Gershater (Synthace), Jonathan Bones (National Institute for Bioprocessing), Robert Thomas (Loughborough University), Chris McCready (Sartorius Stedim Data Analytics), and Victor Konakovsky (Newcastle University). BPI has collaborated with conference organizer KNect365…