Collaborating to accelerate vaccine manufacturing
The relentless threat posed by infectious diseases drives the need for effective, safe and affordable vaccines. Unfortunately, the complexity and variety of vaccine types and manufacturing methods have constrained the industry’s ability to establish widely applicable processing templates. This forces vaccine manufacturers to develop customized approaches for each pathogen and each outbreak – a time-consuming and resource-intensive process.
To overcome this challenge, we are actively collaborating with academia, vaccine researchers and manufacturers around the world to develop and optimise innovative tools, processes and strategies to resolve bottlenecks and accelerate the availability of desperately needed vaccines. Below, we highlight some of our recent collaborations with organisations based in Europe.
Our collaboration with the Jenner Institute, Oxford University, converted a labour-intensive and non-scalable vaccine production process to an efficient single-use platform using novel filtration and ion-exchange chromatography technologies. The collaboration established a rapid, scalable and GMP-compliant manufacturing template for simian adenoviral vector vaccines.
To further advance vaccine manufacturing readiness, we joined TRANSVAC2, part of the EU’s Horizon 2020 program. Through this initiative, we share our expertise through education and simulated lab processes, helping participants to acquire the skills needed to optimise vaccine manufacturing.
Driving greater efficiency
As part of the DiViNe Consortium, we are demonstrating and validating technology breakthroughs to establish highly efficient vaccine purification processes. The robust and scalable vaccine purification paradigm being developed includes state-of-the-art affinity chromatography with engineered affinity ligands for improved performance. While the initial goal of the DiViNe Consortium is to demonstrate improved purification of several specific vaccine types, the breakthroughs are expected to have widespread applicability for manufacturers of many diverse types of vaccines.
We are part of a consortium funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to develop a breakthrough manufacturing platform for radically lowering costs and increasing vaccine availability and affordability in developing countries. The platform leverages our Natrix® single-use chromatography membrane platform along with Univercells’ process intensification and integration capabilities and Batavia’s vaccine development and manufacturing capabilities.
The power of collaboration
These collaborations are just a few examples of how organisations can come together to solve challenges facing the vaccine industry and deliver meaningful solutions to benefit the global population. With faster, templated and cost-effective approaches to vaccine manufacturing, we take an important step towards expanding access, addressing shortages in supply and accelerating our response to outbreaks and pandemics.
This article was published in the European Biotechnology Magazine Winter Edition 2020.