Mammalian cells release extracellular vesicles (EVs) that play a major role in intercellular communication. Their in-depth role in various mammalian processes in yet to be elucidated but it is clear that they have enormous potential for treating various clinical conditions. This project focusses on (1) designing reactor cells to culture vesicle-producing cells for manufacturing and eventually scaling-up the EV production and (2) isolating and characterizing EVs (downstream processing). The suitability of fluidized bed bioreactor (FBB) systems for culturing EV-producing cells will be investigated and the operating parameters optimized. Following this, the isolation of the cell-secreted EVs using novel custom-built nano-engineered membrane filtration systems will be evaluated.
Preliminary results show that Fluidized bed bioreactors can sustain the growth of adherent and non-adherent cells for a specific period of time. On the other hand, the growth rate for these culture periods is lower than that of standard T-flask controls. The main limiting factor appears to be the oxygen supply and further optimization studies are needed to improve the growth rate and to sustain cultures for longer periods of time. If achieved, these bioreactors are a far more powerful scalable system compared to the standard controls.
|Effective start/end date||1/02/19 → 1/05/19|