• disposable bioreactors;
  • SUB;
  • process scale-up;
  • fed-batch;
  • mammalian cell culture


The adoption of disposable bioreactor technology as an alternate to traditional nondisposable technology is gaining momentum in the biotechnology industry. Evaluation of current disposable bioreactors systems to sustain high intensity fed-batch mammalian cell culture processes needs to be explored. In this study, an assessment was performed comparing single-use bioreactors (SUBs) systems of 50-, 250-, and 1,000-L operating scales with traditional stainless steel (SS) and glass vessels using four distinct mammalian cell culture processes. This comparison focuses on expansion and production stage performance. The SUB performance was evaluated based on three main areas: operability, process scalability, and process performance. The process performance and operability aspects were assessed over time and product quality performance was compared at the day of harvest. Expansion stage results showed disposable bioreactors mirror traditional bioreactors in terms of cellular growth and metabolism. Set-up and disposal times were dramatically reduced using the SUB systems when compared with traditional systems. Production stage runs for both Chinese hamster ovary and NS0 cell lines in the SUB system were able to model SS bioreactors runs at 100-, 200-, 2,000-, and 15,000-L scales. A single 1,000-L SUB run applying a high intensity fed-batch process was able to generate 7.5 kg of antibody with comparable product quality. © 2011 American Institute of Chemical Engineers Biotechnol. Prog., 2011