Driving Advancements in Biopharmaceutical Manufacturing

Fully integrated downstream process to enable next-generation manufacturing

12 Mar 2023


Next‐generation manufacturing (NGM) has evolved over the past decade to a point where large biopharmaceutical organizations are making large investments in the technology and considering implementation in clinical and commercial processes. There are many well‐considered reasons to implement NGM. For the most part, organizations will not fund NGM unless the implementation benefits the funding organization by providing reduced costs, reduced time, or additional needed capabilities. Productivity improvements gained from continuous purification are shown in this work, which used a new system that fully integrates and automates several downstream unit operations of a biopharmaceutical process to provide flexibility and easy implementation of NGM. The equipment and automation needed to support NGM can be complicated and expensive. Biopharmaceutical Process Development considered two options as follows: (1) design its own NGM system or (2) buy a prebuilt system. PAK BioSolutions offers a turn‐key automated and integrated system that can operate up to four continuous purification stages simultaneously, while maintaining a small footprint in the manufacturing plant. The system provides significant cost benefits (~10Å~ lower) compared with the alternative—integration of many different pieces of equipment through a Distributed Control System that would require significant engineering time for design, automation, and integration. Integrated and Continuous Biomanufacturing can lead to significant reductions in facility size, reduced manufacturing costs, and enhanced product quality when compared with the traditional batch mode of operation. The system uses new automation strategies that robustly link unit operations. We present the optimized process fit, sterility and bioburden control strategy, and automation features (such as pH feedback control and in‐line detergent addition), which enabled continuous operation of a 14‐day end‐to‐end monoclonal antibody purification process at the clinical manufacturing scale.

Keywords: NGM; bioprocess; downstream; integrated system; intensification.

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