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Keywords:

  • culture media optimization;
  • monoclonal antibody production;
  • amino acids;
  • fed-batch culture;
  • CHO cells

Abstract

Culture media design is central to the optimization of monoclonal antibody (mAb) production. Although general strategies do not currently exist for optimization of culture media, the combined use of statistical design and analysis of experiments and strategies based on simple material balances can facilitate culture media design. In this study, we evaluate the effect of selected amino acids on the growth rate and monoclonal antibody production of a Chinese hamster ovary DG-44 (CHO-DG44) cell line. These amino acids were selected based on their relative mass fraction in the specific mAb produced in this study, their consumption rate during bioreactor experiments, and also through a literature review. A Plackett–Burman statistical design was conducted to minimize the number of experiments needed to obtain statistically relevant information. The effect of this set of amino acids was evaluated during exponential cell culture (considering viable cell concentration and the specific growth rate as main output variables) and during the high cell-density stage (considering mAb final concentration and specific productivity as relevant output variables). For this particular cell line, leucine (Leu) and arginine (Arg) had the highest negative and positive effects on cell viability, respectively; Leu and threonine (Thr) had the highest negative effect on growth rate, and valine (Val) and Arg demonstrated the highest positive impact on mAb final concentration. Results suggest the pertinence of a two-stage strategy for amino acid supplementation, with a mixture optimized for cell growth and a different amino acid mixture for mAb production at high density. © 2011 American Institute of Chemical Engineers Biotechnol. Prog., 2011