SCHOTT ViewCell flow cell adds flexibility to biopharmaceutical process control

Published: 18-Oct-2023

Following the market launch of the ViewPort sensor port for bioreactors, SCHOTT introduces the ViewCell flow cell, a new component for biopharmaceutical process analysis

Via a sterile-safe optical window, the flow cell enables in-situ measurements of biological and physical parameters in downstream processing.

It can be used during purification and filtration as well as during subsequent formulation. As a result, physical sampling and the need for storage tanks are reduced.

Thanks to the special glass-to-metal connection, the seamless and sterile-safe design of ViewCell also increases the safety and efficiency of process analysis and thus contributes to an optimised yield.

Traditionally, biopharmaceutical process analyses are laborious, cost-intensive and carry the risk of contamination when samples are taken.

With the expansion of its innovative PAT portfolio, SCHOTT is now providing a remedy.

“ViewCell allowed us to quickly build and test small scale flow systems for Raman analysis, which we use to mimic real-world industrial processes."

"The compact nature of ViewCell reduces the overall volume of sample material required which helps us to minimise waste and save costs – a key consideration when dealing with expensive, or difficult to obtain test materials,” notes Prof. Alan Ryder, Principal Investigator at the Nanoscale Biophotonics Laboratory at the University of Galway.

With the ViewPort sensor interfaces, SCHOTT already enables in-situ process control when cultivating micro-organisms or cells in the upstream process.

Pharmaceutical companies can connect optical measuring systems to the SCHOTT PAT components from the outside and record important process parameters directly and continuously through a highly transmissive optical window.

As such, even the smallest deviations can be detected and adjusted immediately.

Now, with the ViewCell flow cell, these advantages can be utilised at other, additional points in biopharmaceutical production as well.

"From filtration to formulation, the flow cell can be integrated into the product stream of various multi-use or single-use plants in the downstream process,” explains Christian Ott, Head of R&D Biotech at SCHOTT.

"There, ViewCell enables continuous in-situ measurement of multiple process parameters of the medium flowing through it, which supports pharmaceutical companies in their process intensification.”

Like this story? Subscribe to Manufacturing Chemist magazine for the latest news, updates and expert-written articles from the global pharmaceutical and biopharma sectors. For more information click here.

Optical sensors or spectrometers are connected to the flow cell for monitoring. As the measuring instruments do not come into contact with the medium, they do not penetrate the sterile barrier and can easily be replaced during ongoing production. That is a major advancement compared to fixed probes. 

The new, sterilisable flow cell from SCHOTT is made of materials that comply with best practices in the pharmaceutical industry: viewing windows made of sapphire, glass, and stainless steel.

Alternatively, SCHOTT offers presterilised variants of ViewCell for single-use applications.

All variants are durable, processed without adhesives or other auxiliary materials due to the special glass-to-metal connection, and can be used in a safe and sterile manner. In addition, to support GMP requirements, SCHOTT PAT components are provided with an individual data matrix code.

You may also like