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Keywords:

  • transport;
  • diffusion;
  • mathematical modeling;
  • biomedical engineering;
  • process control

A modeling approach to identify sets of culture conditions to promote homogeneous growth of cells in perfusion bioreactors equipped with regular shape scaffolds is proposed. We identify cases in which dynamic culturing is necessary using a zero-dimensional mass transport and reaction model. Then, based on the three-dimensional (3-D) rendering of the flow field inside the bioreactor, we identify regions where cellular growth may become critical; finally, using a 1-D mass transport and reaction model, we calculate the minimal perfusion flow necessary to maintain the cellular growth rate above a target threshold. The developed approach is used to analyze culturing conditions inside an indirect perfusion bioreactor equipped with a lattice scaffold. Regions where the perfusion flow is inadequate to foster cellular growth at the desired rate are identified. The perfusion flow required to maintain the target growth rate inside the bioreactor is calculated. © 2013 American Institute of Chemical Engineers AIChE J, 59: 3131–3144, 2013