Single Use

Special Report: Toward Sustainable Engineering Practices in Biologics Manufacturing

Introduction by William P. Flanagan Biopharmaceutical development and manufacturing demand scalable processes that can be quickly developed, easily implemented, and smoothly transferred to production. Disposable, ready-to-use technologies play a crucial role in providing flexibility to support agile biomanufacturing operations. Single-use systems provide process efficiencies by removing steps such as cleaning and cleaning validation, thus allowing for faster change-over between manufacturing runs. The biopharmaceutical industry is increasingly adopting single-use approaches, and the global market for such bioprocessing tools is expected to…

Advances in Bioprocessing: Single-Use and Stainless Steel Technologies

The increasing penetration of disposable devices in the biopharmaceutical manufacturing industry has been well documented, and with good reason. These applications represent a new paradigm in the evolution of biomanufacturing technologies and practices, opening the industry up to new possibilities such as flexible and modular facilities. But stainless steel applications and innovations remain vital to this industry. Some stainless devices may be irreplaceable, including large tanks, autoclavable and heat-sterilized fermentors and bioreactors, and storage and filling devices. Other innovations in…

Disposable Components in Biomanufacturing: A Regulatory Perspective

On a holistic level, the decision regarding whether to use single-use or stainless steel equipment in a biomanufacturing plant is a significant one. It greatly influences the design, construction, layout, and operation of a plant — and consequently, the timing and cost of the overall project. And regulatory review can add an element of risk to using anything new. Disposables have been viewed as a revolutionary concept, and they are. But from a routine regulatory operational perspective, I believe it…

The Single-Use or Stainless Steel Decision Process: A CDMO Perspective

Decisions regarding whether and when to use single-use (SU) (disposable) devices or stainless steel (SS) equipment for biopharmaceutical manufacturing have been discussed for more than a decade. To date, no argument in terms of safety, cost-effectiveness, or operational efficiency is fully convincing to choose one technology platform or the other for all applications. Biopharmaceutical companies often do not have in-use data to make strategic manufacturing decisions. But one group has been significantly growing its expertise in use of single-use technologies:…

Meeting the Demand for a New Generation of Flexible and Agile Manufacturing Facilities: An Engineering Challenge

Classical stainless steel installations in purpose-built facilities dominate the global capacity for commercial biopharmaceutical manufacturing. Early facilities that were designed for single-product processes are now aging, putting them on the investment radar for upgrades to enable manufacturing diversity, and allow more efficient facility use. More than ever before, global engineering leaders are confronted with complex strategic and financial decisions when they seek to invest capital in new flexible pharmaceutical facilities or flex-grading aging facilities for supply of pipeline products. Manufacturing…

End-User Considerations: How Biopharmaceutical Companies and Their Employees Approach Single-Use and Stainless Steel

Along with the other perspectives offered in this special issue, people tasked with actually implementing and working with single-use, stainless-steel, or the more common variations of hybrid systems deserve a say also. When seeking out end-user comments, however, we should consider both the overall company decisions about which systems to use (decisions that may not have accommodated much input from the manufacturing floor) and opinions from individual scientists, technicians, and process engineers themselves who are presented with the facility design and…

Single-Use and Stainless Steel Technologies: Comparison, Contrast — Where Are They Going?

At a recent conference, there was much talk about a major biopharmaceutical project in Asia for which the owner of a company chose a design with primarily traditional multiuse stainless steel tanks and processing equipment, rather than single-use polymer equipment. There were even some stainless steel equipment vendors toasting at the bar that this may be the beginning of a “renaissance” of stainless steel. Is the single-use systems (SUS) honeymoon over? Are many industry professionals hoping this is the end…

Standardization of Disposables Design: The Path Forward for a Potential Game Changer

Recent articles have described how the debate on standardization is slowing down adoption of single-use technology (1). The Standardized Disposables Design (SDD) initiative is working to design simple standard single-use solutions for real-life examples (e.g., buffer bags). In reality, a buffer is a buffer whether it is made in Europe, Asia, or America, so in essence different solutions are not necessary for different end users. A buffer bag is not difficult to design, and it does not vary greatly in…

Next-Generation Bioprocessing for Meeting Healthcare Challenges: The Role Single-Use Handling Systems Can Play

The rapid spread of contagious and lethal diseases worldwide has driven bioprocess suppliers to develop technologies for use in producing disease treatments and vaccines. Bioprocessors need to develop new biologics as well as rapid and reliable methods for bringing those treatments to commercialization. Implementing modular process solutions and single‑use handling systems in closed‑manufacturing processing is one approach to addressing those needs. Developing and discovering solutions for meeting global healthcare conditions is an evolving part of bioindustry. As points of reference,…

Quantitative Risk Assessment of Bioaccumulation Attributable to Extractables and Leachables in Cellular Immunotherapy Biomanufacturing

Precious patient samples, contamination concerns, and limited product purification options have compelled manufacturers of cellular immunotherapies (iTx) such as chimeric antigen receptor T cells (CAR-T) and T-cell receptor (TCR) technologies toward the disposables industry. Such companies are implementing single-use technologies (SUTs) almost exclusively (1). But despite the dominance of disposable bioprocess platforms and their extraordinary growth in the iTx marketplace, researchers have made limited efforts to understand the perennial and critical bioprocessing risks of leachables and extractables. Here we outline…