2012

Lean Six Sigma

    About 10 years ago as a vice president of Avecia Biologics, I wrote an article for an early issue of BioProcess International looking ahead at likely changes in biomanufacturing (1,2,3). For the best part of the intervening period, Avecia Biologics and Diosynth slugged it out in the marketplace, each trying to grow its contract manufacturing business at the expense of the other. But in a life-altering two-year period between 2009 and 2011, both companies saw their realities and…

Global Marketplace

Cold-Chain Tracking Product: PakSense BIOmed XpressPDF package label Applications: Drugs, vaccines, and other temperature-sensitive biologics Features: Calibrated to NIST standards, PakSense BIOmed XpressPDF labels help companies monitor and record product package temperatures. The size of a sugar packet, each waterproof label features a USB connection that automatically generates PDF files. Unlike bulky recorders that read ambient conditions, a label sensor measures the temperature of the surface on which it is attached once a minute. Results can be read at a…

Biopharmaceuticals On Demand

    By 2016, five of the top 10 biopharmaceuticals are expected to be monoclonal antibodies (MAbs). Follow-on (biosimilar) versions of those blockbusters will most likely become available in later years due to patent expiry and the introduction of legislation for biosimilars around the world. Personalized therapies will drive the fractionation of the biopharmaceutical market, trending biomanufacturing toward smaller batch sizes and campaign-based production schemes. A growing need for flexible, multipurpose, and cost-effective manufacturing will significantly affect the design of…

Rapid Pharmaceutical Product Development

    A Chemistry, Manufacturing, and Controls (CMC) Strategy Forum was held in January 2012 in San Francisco, CA, to examine the topic of rapid pharmaceutical product development. The purpose of this meeting was to promote an understanding of how best to increase the speed of product development, focusing on areas that improve chances of regulatory success while lessening the time it takes to get a product through development and onto the market. Participants also sought to identify and discuss…

Where’s the Viral Marketing When Spreading Information on Actual Viruses?

The importance of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC, www.cdc.gov) in the tracking and treatment of viruses such as the influenza virus cannot be underestimated. It is a first line of defense against an influenza pandemic as well as a way to analyze seasonal influenza outbreaks to make certain that they do not deviate from their normal seasonal and geographic patterns. The CDC seeks to communicate with the American public through a wide variety of media. To its…

Multiproduct Facility Design and Control for Biologics

    Multiproduct facilities are increasingly integral to corporate biologics network and supply chain strategies. Manufacturing capacity strategies ensuring appropriate facility design and procedural controls to manage the risks of producing multiple products are critical to the successful deployment of commercial and clinical supply plans. A Chemistry, Manufacturing, and Controls (CMC) Strategy forum was held in Bethesda, MD, in August 2011 to highlight various challenges, risks, and control strategies associated with multiproduct facilities. Multiproduct strategies for the manufacture of a…

A Framework for Process Knowledge Management

    Process development and manufacturing for biopharmaceuticals are often disjointed activities. Disconnects between groups within an organization can be aggravated by a lack of common terminology and poor data-management practices. Implementing a simple data model based on the ISA-88 standard for batch control can help companies capture process and facility data throughout their product life cycle (1). The first half of this two-part article illustrates how translating a process description to a structured electronic format could transform the bioprocessing…

Safety, Flexibility, and Efficiency

    International pharmaceutical and biotech companies are demanding solutions for current and future challenges of their industries — solutions that will stand the test of time while offering significant advances over current manufacturing techniques. Modern and highly proficient production lines for commercial manufacturing of parenteral drugs can represent a crucial criterion in the success of these companies. New and innovative high-speed filling lines for prefilled syringes present an excellent opportunity to meet current production demands. Following is an example…

Managing Cost Without Sacrificing Quality

    Over the past decade, significant pressures have threatened the future of many pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical companies. Increasing drug development costs, declining research and development (R&D) productivity, mounting regulatory setbacks, and looming patent expirations — with fewer blockbuster therapies on the horizon — are collectively challenging many businesses to stay profitable and competitive within the industry. Many companies are intensifying their focus on reducing operating costs, particularly within manufacturing operations. This trend is almost an omnipresent feature of management…

Efficient, Flexible Facilities for the 21st Century

    A number of recent improvements in the engineering of high-titer expression vectors, in biopharmaceutical process development, and in facility construction have converged to present new opportunities for cost-effective, flexible, biomanufacturing facility construction. The evolution of requirements for biopharmaceutical facilities is driven by globalization of the biopharmaceutical industry, patent expirations of several blockbuster biopharmaceutical products, and the increasing shift in new product development away from blockbuster drugs and toward more personalized, niche products. An increase in product approvals (primarily…