Upstream Processing

Fed-Batch Cell Culture Process Optimization

Most biopharmaceutical production platforms are based on fed-batch cell culture protocols, which can support high volumetric productivity while maintaining low operational complexity (1). The industry is interested in developing or refining high-titer cell culture processes to meet increasing market demands and reduce manufacturing costs (2). Although advancements in cell engineering have enabled development of high-performing recombinant cell lines (3,4,5,6), improvements in cell culture media and process parameter settings are required to realize the maximum production potentials of those cells (7,–8).…

Measuring kLa for Better Bioreactor Performance

Knowledge of kLa (the volumetric mass-transfer coefficient that describes the efficiency with which oxygen can be delivered to a bioreactor for a given set of operating conditions) is not new. Here I provide information for those who are unfamiliar with the measurement method and/or issues that must be considered when making these measurements. Advances in this area now make it advisable to run kLa measurements routinely in many bioprocesses. The Importance of Measuring kLa Before examining the process theory and…

Upstream Single-Use Bioprocessing Systems

Single-use bioprocessing equipment has become well-accepted technology in a relatively short time. Disposable devices and components have created market niches and new segments that continue to evolve. In this dynamic environment, it is difficult to measure acceptance or assess market growth. Here we project the world market for cell culture single-use systems (SUS) as well as problems affecting that market, including adoption for commercial manufacture. This is based on our 10-year analysis of the industry, with data from our eighth…

Production of CGMP-Grade Lentiviral Vectors

Lentiviral vectors are important tools for gene transfer because of their ability to transduce a number of cell types without the need for host cells to be dividing. As a result, investigators are using them as gene delivery vehicles in clinical applications. Since lentiviral vectors play such a vital role in gene therapy, they need to be manufactured at large scale for clinical trials. But, large-scale production using CGMP methods can present a number of challenges.

To address these challenges, the authors of this case study developed a process that allows for extensive scale-up in a safe, sterile, and reproducible system to produce clinical-grade lentivirus. This manufacturing process is very efficient and can be carried out using minimal staff (two operators for production of each subbatch). It provides the extensive scale-up capacity necessary to produce CGMP-grade lentivirus, and it has been used successfully in several completed and on-going phase 1–2 ex-vivo gene therapy clinical trials.

Development of a Plant-Made Pharmaceutical Production Platform

Since the late 1980s, studies have shown that plants can manufacture functional transgenic pharmaceutical compounds. Advantages attributed to plant-made pharmaceutical (PMP) approaches are compelling, and PMP production continues to attract interest from investors and the biopharmaceutical industry (Table 1). Proposed PMP benefits include proven scalability, high production capacity, limited exposure to human or animal pathogens, lower capital expenditures (CapEx), and decreased operating costs. Those putative advantages have proven to be significant business forces driving continued investor support for PMP ventures.…

Metabolic Process Engineering

Metabolic process engineering (MPE) was developed at Bristol-Myers Squibb Company as a tool to effectively control and optimize industrial cell culture processes used for production of biological drugs. A fundamental need was identified to introduce manipulations to the metabolism of production cell lines without genetic engineering. Optimization goals for production cell line performance include, for example, volumetric productivity, control of product quality attributes and by-product formation, and improved process scalability. With MPE, we could achieve targeted changes to cellular metabolism…

Noninvasive Optical Sensor Technology in Shake Flasks

In process development, appropriate scaling is important to achieve acceptable product quality without compromising titer (1). Scale-down approaches involve matching the oxygen transfer coefficient (kLa) value, impeller tip speed, power per unit volume, or mixing time to those of a bioreactor (2). Bench-top bioreactors are typically used in bioprocess engineering as scale-down models of commercial units in fermentation and cell culture because of their similarity in geometry (H/D ratio) and mechanical properties (agitation type and sparging). By contrast, shaking culture…

Rapid Production of Functional Proteins of a Combinatorial IgG Library in CHO Cells

Recombinant DNA (rDNA) technologies provide a wide range of tools for producing a broad array of recombinant proteins. Since the early 1970s, the biotechnology industry has harnessed those tools — together with genetic engineering and genomics — for developing new classes of innovative and effective therapeutic molecules. The therapeutic recombinant protein market segment now represents the core of the medical biotechnology industry, with hundreds of companies involved in discovery, development, and marketing. Although recombinant technologies are extremely powerful tools, significant…

Differential Cell Culture Media for Single-Cell Cloning

    Recombinant therapeutic protein production using cell culture systems is a US$70 billion market. Most biotherapeutic proteins, including monoclonal antibodies (MAbs), are produced in Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells, which can generate the posttranslational modifications required for full biological function. Single-cell cloning is an important step in generating homogenous recombinant protein-producing mammalian cell lines. Recent advances in media development technologies have enabled limiting dilution cloning (LDC) and protein production in a serum-free environment to meet regulatory requirements.   LDC…

Performing Quality by Design on hydrolysates: a DOE case study

Hydrolysates provide increased cell growth and titers. The aim of FrieslandCampina Domo is to re-define hydrolysates and re-design their quality profile. The Quality by Design concept as put forward by the FDA proves to be an excellent framework for achieving these goals. In addition it will also enable FrieslandCampina Domo to provide a Design Space of this critical raw material for the biopharmaceutical industry and so making process changes easier and cost effective. FrieslandCampina Domo has analysed protein hydrolysates at…