New device could improve biopharma manufacturing, research shows
10 May 2017
Researchers have developed a new device to more accurately predict which proteins could be used to develop biopharmaceutical drugs.
A team from the University of Leeds and MedImmune developed the device following research into extensional flow, which can be damaging to bio-molecules, such as protein-based biopharmaceutical therapeutics.
A common example of extensional flow includes the effect on water seen when gardeners put their finger over the end of a hosepipe, the researchers said.
Researcher David Brockwell said that while tests existed to assess the effects of changes in temperature or pH on protein stability, the team’s new test gauged directly the effects of fluid flows used in manufacturing processes.
Brockwell said: “There are very few existing protein tests available to industry which actually examine how aggregation levels are related to manufacturing conditions.
“What we now have is a much more accurate way of predicting which proteins can be used in biopharmaceutical drug development and how processes could also be changed to improve their quality.”
Brockwell added that because of the success of biopharmaceuticals in treating a number of illnesses, any innovation that drug companies can use to improve their costs would have a “significant effect”.
A full account of the research has been published by Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.