The Biotechnology field is one with a lot of promise. Though it seems much has been uncovered, we have only just scratched the surface when it comes to biotechnology. Many engineers across the globe are making great strides in Biotechnology and bioreactors are getting more efficient with time. The following innovations for bioreactors are said to shape the future in the biotech industry.
The demand for single-use bioreactors has risen over the past few years, and a lot of innovation surrounds single-use reactors. The main innovation is the development of better and newer disposable products, such as connectors and disposable bags. Disposable bioreactors with disposable parts are a trend that will continue as companies are granting more of their R&D budget towards that end. They will be easy to use, and scientists will be able to work with them regardless of location because of the reactor’s portability. Though there is much to do before single-use bioreactors can be produced en masse, they are the future of biotechnology.
Continuous processes such as perfusion are adopted upstream, but both downstream and upstream processes will soon be continuous. Continuous processing is a result of developments in processing efficiencies. Chromatography techniques are also becoming continuous. Continuous processing will take long before it can be widely applicable, but if single-use bioreactors are developed, the change to continuous end-to-end processing could happen a lot faster. There are promising advancements in continuous bioprocessing, including closing certain performance gaps that will ensure continuity. In the next decade, the innovation should be brought to fruition.
High-density perfusion is an innovation that pharmaceutical companies aim to use for reduction of costs and minimizing production time when producing drugs. It is getting a lot of attention, particularly in protein pharmaceuticals. Intensified perfusion involves a cell recycle system which must include continuous bioprocessing. High-density perfusion will be able to produce an antibody that is up to ten times larger than normal perfusion, but it does it with a smaller footprint. Because of the speed and impact of intensified perfusion, pharmaceutical companies will reduce their costs significantly. Many trials are going on in different locations across the world within this technology.
The design of the bioreactor of the future is undergoing innovation as well. For some industry needs, the large 10,000L bioreactor is a thing of the past. Bioreactors are getting ever smaller, allowing for standardized production needs. The design will have to allow for use by anyone and not for use by a professional. Due to highly efficient processes and high cell density, perfusion bioreactors will need to be extremely sensitive. They will also have to have controls that determine how samples are put into the reactor. Microbial bioreactors will also become more common as a result of the cell structure of modern times.
Bioreactors may soon be a tool for personal medication. In that case, there will have to be tissue and organ bioreactors, which must have structures within them that mimic the body’s vasculature in nutrient provision and removal of metabolic waste products. The bioreactors will also be innovated in a way that will match the body’s production of cells and the performance will have to be better at attachment and detachment of cells for them to grow with minimal damage. These personalized models will also have to take account growth factors by providing stromal cells specifically for that function.