Manufacturing

Evaluating New Film for Single-Use Bags: Growth Performance Studies with Animal and Human Cells

In biopharmaceutical development and manufacturing processes, single-use technology has become widely accepted (1). Storage and cultivation bags are particularly common. They are fabricated from plastics consisting of multilayer films and are typically provided gamma-sterilized by suppliers (2). The bags offer several advantages such as savings in time and cost. Lowered contamination risk results from reduced cleaning and sterilization demands. However, some adverse effects of polymer films on cell growth and metabolism have been reported, both for storage and cultivation bags…

Multivariate Analysis of Biological Additives for Growth Media and Feeds

Biological additives such as yeast extracts and peptones are commonly used in growth-media formulations for biopharmaceutical manufacturing. In spite of drivers encouraging companies to reduce variability in mammalian cell culture processes by using chemically defined media, many microbial and mammalian processes continue to use biological additives in their growth-medium formulations and/or feeds. According to Sheffield Bioscience (Kerry, Inc.), at least six of the top 10 licensed mammalian-cell– derived biotherapeutic products are manufactured using biological additives (1). During process development, it…

Alkyl Mono- and Diglucosides: Highly Effective, Nonionic Surfactant Replacements for Polysorbates in Biotherapeutics — a Review

Many biotherapeutic proteins are naturally subject to aggregation. The clinical consequences of protein aggregation can be dramatic, not only affecting bioavailability and pharmacokinetics, but in extreme cases dramatically altering pharmacodynamics as well. Of equal or perhaps more importance is that aggregation is a principal source of unwanted immunogenicity in biotherapeutics. Aggregation-induced neutralizing antibodies and/or anaphylactic reactions are serious and growing US and European regulatory concerns. So they will have significant and growing influence on the future development and regulatory approval…

Factors Affecting Sterile Filtration of Sodium-Carboxymethylcellulose–Based Solutions

Carboxymethylcellulose sodium (CMC), is widely used as an excipient in oral, topical, and parenteral pharmaceutical formulations. It increases viscosity (1–3), serves as a suspension aid (4), and stabilizes emulsions (5). More recently, applications for CMC in formulations that facilitate improved delivery of cytotoxic drugs and biologics have been evaluated (6, 7). CMC is manufactured in a broad range of viscosities, with grades typically classified as low, medium, or high viscosity. CMC grades can be divided further based on their degree…

Insulin in Demand: Engineering a Facility to Serve Local and International Markets

Discovered in 1922 at the University of Toronto (by Frederick Banting and John James Rickard Macleod), insulin has been produced from animal extract, primarily cattle and pigs. Following Frederick Sanger’s work on insulin sequence in 1951, Dorothy Hogkin published in 1969 the three-dimensional structure of insulin. This breakthrough led to many developments and applications of recombinant DNA for the production of insulin, human first and then analogs. The significant increase in the diabetic population — especially in BRICS countries (Brazil,…

Elucidation: Strict, but Flexible, Industrial Automation for Biopharmaceutical Manufacturing

Biopharmaceuticals are the fastest growing sector of the pharmaceutical industry, making up about 20% of the market, with annual growth rates of about 8% (double that of more traditional pharmaceutical sectors). To increase capacity and uphold stringent quality and regulatory demands, manufacturers often reassess their operational and technology strategies while focusing on rising manufacturing costs and the pressure of delivering cost-effective new drug products. Bioproduction can range from small batches to low-cost, high-volume campaigns. Few manufacturers have the required in-house…

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…

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…