Monoclonal antibodies are at the cutting edge of medical research, especially in the field of oncology, where researchers are developing monoclonal antibodies that bind specifically to tumors and to target oncolytic drug delivery. The production of recombinant proteins and monoclonal antibodies from mammalian cells is affected by culture conditions. While well-understood, robust, and convenient, classical batch-style 2-D cultures are not very biologically relevant systems.
The hollow fiber bioreactor (HFBR) is a high-density, continuous perfusion culture system that was developed to more closely approximate in vivo cell growth conditions. HFBRs are an ideal system for the production of monoclonal antibodies from hybridoma cell lines, and are an effective method for producing milligram to gram quantities of monoclonal antibodies and recombinant proteins. The harvested product is concentrated and free of contaminating proteins, DNA, RNA, and proteases. Cultures can be maintained for long periods of time and the scalability of the system is determined by the length of culture, not new equipment.
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