The biologics industry is booming so much that the global market will reach USD$749.62 Billion by 2028. If you're part of this growing field, it's worth staying updated about the latest technological innovations so that you can get the most out of your experiments.
The Biologics Heated Market
The use of biologics is skyrocketing in both academic and industry scenarios. This is because scientists are more aware of how useful cellular and gene-based products are in treating human diseases like cancer and rare genetic conditions.
So, the pharma industry is investing heavily in the R&D of biologics on a larger scale. As a result, we have several biologic-based therapies being approved.
A New Perspective on Something Old
With the increased knowledge about diseases, new biological targets appeared, paving the way to develop new therapies. We now have a wide range of biological products available such as vaccines, recombinant therapeutic proteins, gene therapies, natural protein sutures, coagulant factors, and diagnostic tools .
Biologics manufacturing usually involves :
Cell line construction
Upstream processing (fermentation)
Common Cell Types Used in Biologics Manufacturing
Common host organisms for producing biopharmaceuticals include Escherichia coli, mammalian cells, yeasts, and plants. Each one has its advantages and disadvantages depending on the application .
In industrial applications, the most commonly used species are Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Pichia pastoris, Yarrowia lipolytica, and Kluyveromyces marxianus .
The main advantages of using yeast cells in biopharmaceutical production are :
Inexpensive growth media requirements
Many species are generally regarded as safe
Easy genetic manipulation
Compatibility with high-density large-scale fermentation processes for biochemical production.
Mammalian cells like Chinese Hamster Ovary (CHO) cell lines are preferred for post-translational modification. These cells display high yields, but their doubling time is slow. They also require complex media and may be subjected to viral contamination .
Other cell types
E. coli grows fast but may form endotoxins and inclusion bodies. Finally, plant cells grow slower and are more difficult to manipulate .
Biologic Manufacturing Challenges
The living cells that produce biologics are sensitive and require extra care in fermentation, aseptic processing, storage, and testing .
While chemical drugs are usually small molecules, biologics are often complex and heterogeneous compounds. These products are also more prone to microbiological contamination .
Master Cell Banks
Another particularity of working with biologics on large scales is the need for long-term cultures. But even well-established cell lines have limited stability in these conditions. So, you must have proper control systems to ensure the continuity of product supply .
For this, you can prepare a pool of cells derived from a single clone and store it in liquid nitrogen in several vials, creating a master cell bank (MCB) . Then you can thaw and expand individual vials as required to create your working cell bank .
With this method, you can start thousands of production runs before the original cell stock is exhausted .
Needless to say, you must characterize and extensively test this MCB for contaminants such as bacteria, fungi, viruses, and mycoplasmas .
Moreover, when doing gene editing experiments, you must ensure that the transfection took place correctly, especially when dealing with large vectors that are more difficult to transfect.
How Can Inish Analyser Help You?
As we discussed earlier, biological products are complex and heterogeneous and must undergo strict quality control.
A reliable cell count and viability are key metrics in biomanufacturing, ensuring:
Safety, efficacy, purity, potency, identity, and quality of the final product
Oversight of both product and process
Quality control of source materials, intermediates, and the final product
Reproducibility of lots
Comparability after manufacturing change
Another essential metric for cellular genetic engineering applications is transfection efficiency.
And that's precisely what we can help you with. Cellix's Inish Analyser is the most reliable, rapid, label-free instrument for cell counting, cell viability, and transfection efficiency prediction.
With the Inish Analyser, you can predict transfection efficiencies immediately post-transfection by giving you an accurate analysis of the percentage of cells with open membranes.
The main advantages of this method are:
Label-free – No fluorescent dyes, meaning you won't waste time on sample preparation.
No expensive slides/chambers – Save money for your research.
High-throughput - Analyse thousands of cells per second.
Compatible with a wide variety of cell samples - CHO cells, T-cells, yeast cells, stem cells, sperm cells, etc.
Easy to use and compact – Run your samples in three steps.
Pipette 40µL of cell sample into a tube
Run Sample in Inish Analyser
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