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Institute for Bioengineering and Biosciences
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Development of 3D High-Quality PDMS Microfluidic Chips Based on Micromilling Technology

Development of 3D High-Quality PDMS Microfluidic Chips Based on Micromilling Technology | iBB | Scoop.it

In recent years, there has been an increased interest in exploring the potential of micro-and mesoscale milling technologies for developing cost-effective microfluidic systems with high design flexibility and a rapid microfabrication process that does not require a cleanroom. Nevertheless, the number of current studies aiming to fully understand and establish the benefits of this technique in developing high-quality microsystems with simple integrability is still limited. In a recent paper published in Micromachines, BERG-iBB researches, Ana Azevedo and Amin Javidanbardan, in collaboration, with João Pedro Conde and Virginia Chu from INESC-MN, describe a systematic methodology for developing 3D high-quality thermoplastic-based molds for microfluidic structures based on micromilling technology. The work was performed under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No. 812909 CODOBIO, within the Marie Skłodowska-Curie European Training Networks framework.

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Integrated Continuous Biomanufacturing Webinar

Integrated Continuous Biomanufacturing Webinar | iBB | Scoop.it

Global competitive pressures are currently forcing companies to innovate in order to succeed in the future. One of the major challenges is to accelerate process development and reduce manufacturing costs, enhancing flexibility and product quality. A key to address these challenges includes a move into a continuous and integrated bioprocessing. If you want to learn more about integrated continuous biomanufacturing don´t loose the Integrated Continuous Biomanufacturing Webinar (June 9, 2021), which is organized by Engineering Conferences International (ECI). The webinar is co-chaired by Jason Walther (Sanofi), Ana Azevedo (BERG-iBB) and Rohini Deshpande (Amgen), and features Charles L Cooney (MIT), Veena Warikoo (Roche), Veronique Chotteau (KTH) and Neil Soice (Amgen) as speakers. Learn more about this exciting and high-level scientific gathering here!

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Manufacturing of Bacteriophages for Therapeutic Applications

Manufacturing of Bacteriophages for Therapeutic Applications | iBB | Scoop.it

The use of bacteriophages, or simply phages, as therapeutic agents offer is expected to reduce antibiotic use and mitigate the emergence of multidrug-resistant bacteria. The development of phage therapies should be accompanied by the improvement of phage biomanufacturing processes. In a review published in Biotechnology Advances, Jorge João, João Lampreia, Miguel Prazeres and Ana Azevedo from BERG-iBB showcase current processes used for the manufacturing of phages and discuss future alternatives. On the production side, key factors (e.g. bacterial physiological state, phage infection, operation parameters) are described alongside with the different bioreactor operation modes. Traditional methods used in the initial phage isolation steps are then described followed by the presentation of current state-of-the-art purification approaches. Continuous purification of phages is finally presented as a future biomanufacturing trend.

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mRNA Vaccine Manufacturing: Challenges and Bottlenecks

mRNA Vaccine Manufacturing: Challenges and Bottlenecks | iBB | Scoop.it

Vaccines are one of the most important tools in public health and play an important role in infectious diseases control. mRNA vaccines are reaching the stoplight as a new alternative to conventional vaccines due to their precision, safe profile and flexible manufacturing. In fact, the first Covid-19 vaccines to receive regulatory approval are based on mRNA technology. In a joint review just published in Vaccine, Sara Sousa Rosa, Miguel Prazeres, Ana Azevedo from BERG-iBB, together with Marco Marques from University College London, describe the current state-of-art of mRNA vaccines, focusing on the challenges and bottlenecks of manufacturing that need to be addressed to turn this new vaccination technology into an effective, fast and cost-effective response to emerging health crises.

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iBB and TechnoPhage Collaborate on Bacteriophage Purification

iBB and TechnoPhage Collaborate on Bacteriophage Purification | iBB | Scoop.it

Phages offer an alternative solution to antibiotic–based strategies in the fight against multidrug-resistant bacteria. The implementation of phage therapy must be accompanied by the development of phage biomanufacturing processes. Within the framework of a collaboration with the company Technophage and of the Phage4BacID project (LISBOA-01-0247-FEDER-033603), BERG-iBB researchers led by Ana Azevedo have contributed extensively with analytical data for the refinement of bacteriophage purification techniques. Of particular note, the know-how in chromatographic methods was key to to support not only the project itself, but also the scientific information that integrated Tecnophage's successfull submission of an Investigational New Drug (IND) application to the US Food and Drug Administration for the company's proprietary product TP-102, which targets diabetic foot infections. Clinical trials are expected to start soon.

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André Nascimento Defends PhD Thesis in Biotechnology and Biosciences

André Nascimento Defends PhD Thesis in Biotechnology and Biosciences | iBB | Scoop.it

André Nascimento defended his PhD thesis in Biotechnology and Biosciences on Monday the 6th april 2020 (14:00 H). During the last years, and under the supervision of Ana Azevedo from BERG-iBB and Steven Cramer and Pankaj Karande from the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (US), André developed and explored affinity peptides and multimodal ligands for the purification of Fab antibody fragments. The title of the thesis is “Development of a novel purification platform for Fab antibody fragments based on affinity peptides and multimodal ligands”.

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Ana Azevedo Delivers Invited Lecture at ESIB 2018

Ana Azevedo Delivers Invited Lecture at ESIB 2018 | iBB | Scoop.it

Ana Azevedo from BERG-iBB was invited to deliver a presention on continuous purification of antibodies at the European Summit of Industrial Biotecnology, in a special session dedicated to the Continuous Downstream Processing of the Biomolecules of the future. The section included also presentations from Novartis, Merck and Sanofi. The summit was held on the 18th – 20th November 2019, in Graz, Austria.

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Mobile‐Phase Modulators as Salt Tolerance Enhancers in Phenylboronate Chromatography

Mobile‐Phase Modulators as Salt Tolerance Enhancers in Phenylboronate Chromatography | iBB | Scoop.it

The mechanisms underlying the adsorption of monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) towards phenylboronate (PB) ligands have been elucidated by Flow Microcalorimetry. The knowledge acquired BERG-iBB researchers, in collaboration with Cristina Dias-Cabral's group from CICS-UBI, suggest how to increase the salt tolerance of the bond between ligand and biomolecule by manipulating the environmental conditions.It was demonstrated that such feature can be accomplished either by using mobile phase modulators that promote the specific cis-diol interactions between PB ligands and mAbs or by diminishing the non-specific interactions involved in the adsorptive process. The research team believes that these findings could contribute towards the effective integration of boronate chromatography in the current mAb downstream processing platform. The paper was published in Biotechnology Journal.

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Integrated Continuous Biomanufacturing IV

Integrated Continuous Biomanufacturing IV | iBB | Scoop.it

The conference "Integrated Continuous Biomanufacturing IV", organized by ECI (Engineering Conferences International), was held in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, in October 6-9. Ana Azevedo from BERG-iBB chaired session 5 on the "Validation of Integrated Continuous Processes" together with Raquel Orozco from Boheringer Ingelheim. Ana was further selected by the steering committee to chair the next ICB conference in 2021.

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Optimizing the Performance of Chromatographic Separations Using Microfluidics

Optimizing the Performance of Chromatographic Separations Using Microfluidics | iBB | Scoop.it

The establishment of novel, simpler and improved purification processes is extremely important to make antibody-based treatment options more accessible and with a lower economic burden to healthcare systems and patients. In this context, the development of microfluidic tools for the optimization of chromatography operating conditions can offer advantages such as low consumption of molecules, fast generation of results and ability to automate and multiplex the assays. In a collaboration between INESC-MN and iBB, researchers have recently reported a novel microfluidics-based methodology to perform rapid and multiplexed screening of various chromatography ligands relative to their ability to bind different target molecules in solution. The work was published in the Biotechnology Journal and is expected to contribute to the fields of separation sciences and analytical chemistry and inspire new developments within the purification of biopharmaceuticals or other molecules.

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Effect of Fluorescent Tags on Rapid Screening of IgG Partition in PEG-salt ATPS

Effect of Fluorescent Tags on Rapid Screening of IgG Partition in PEG-salt ATPS | iBB | Scoop.it

Rapid empirical optimization/screening of the partition of biomolecules in aqueous two-phase systems (ATPS) can be performed in microfluidic devices coupled with fluorescence microscopy. However, the effect of fluorescent tags on partition must be carefully evaluated to assess the validity of extrapolating the results to a situation where the molecules are unlabelled. To evaluate this influence, researchers from BERG-iBB and INESC-MN (Mariana São Pedro, Ana Azevedo, Maria Raquel Aires-Barros and Ruben Soares) carried out an ATPS study using both microtubes (batch) and microfluidic devices (continuous). IgG molecules were labelled with three fluorescent tags with different global charge and reactivity, namely BODIPY™ FL maleimide, Alexa Fluor® 430 NHS ester and BODIPY™ FL NHS ester. The thiol reactive BODIPY™ FL maleimide coupled with a reducing agent provided minimal bias relative to the native molecule in PEG-phosphate systems. The work was recently published in the Biotechnology Journal.

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Featured Photo: Bacteriophage Plaque Assay

Featured Photo: Bacteriophage Plaque Assay | iBB | Scoop.it

Description: A plaque used to determine bacteriophage titers, featured photo by Jorge João, Copyright BERG-iBB 2018.

 

Context: BERG researchers led by Ana Azevedo and Miguel Prazeres are developing processes for bacteriophage manufacturing in collaboration with the portuguese start-up Tecnophage. The work is supported by the Portugal2020 project "Phage4BacID-Bacteriophages in the Diagnostic and Prevention of Multiresistant Infection in Portugal and in the World".

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Early Stage Researcher Positions in Continuous Downstream Processing of Biologics

Early Stage Researcher Positions in Continuous Downstream Processing of Biologics | iBB | Scoop.it

Instituto Superior Técnico (Lisbon) invites applications for 2 PhD positions in Biotechnology and Biosciences (Early Stage Researchers) to join the Marie Skłodowska Curie European Training Network CODOBIO: Continuous Downstream Processing of Biologics. The available projects “Miniaturized platform to capture bio-products through liquid-liquid extraction and solvent-free” and "Microfluidic devices for continuous chromatography" aim at the establishment of miniaturized platforms for continuous extraction and chromatography to aid process design and development. More information can be obtained by clicking the project titles. Candidates should send applications to a.azevedo@tecnico.ulisboa.pt (e-mail ref: “CODOBIO-ESR10”) by the 5th March 2019.

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Microchromatography Integrated with Impedance Sensor for Bioprocess Optimization

Microchromatography Integrated with Impedance Sensor for Bioprocess Optimization | iBB | Scoop.it

The development of new scale-down models for accelerated and cost-effective biopharmaceutical process development has been receiving considerable attention in the last decade. Microfluidic systems have emerged as a particularly attractive candidate by offering miniaturization, parallelization, and allowing continuous and precise pumping and online monitoring possible. In a collaborative work, published in Journal of Chromatography A, BERG-iBB researchers Ana Azevedo and Amin Javidanbardan, together with INESC-MN researchers João Pedro Conde and Virginia Chu, propose a simple and cost-effective method for developing microfluidic chromatographic systems with integrated sensors. Fabrication and integration of microsensors, in this case, an impedance sensor, in each microcolumn provided the possibility of parallelizing experiments with separate online monitoring. The work was performed under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No. 812909 CODOBIO, within the Marie Skłodowska-Curie European Training Networks framework.

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BERG Research Presented at SBCN 2021

BERG Research Presented at SBCN 2021 | iBB | Scoop.it

The 15th international symposium on Biochromatography and Nanoseparations, which is taking place from 17-20th May in virtual mode, aims to highlight the recent progress on the purification and characterization of biomolecules from lab to industrial scale. BERG-IBB researchers will be presenting their work with oral (Ana Azevedo, Ana Rita Santos, Amin Javidanbardan and Malik Wahab) and poster (Jorge João) communications.

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Amin Javidanbardan Wins the Eppendorf Poster Award at the 6th BioProScale Symposium

Amin Javidanbardan Wins the Eppendorf Poster Award at the 6th BioProScale Symposium | iBB | Scoop.it

Amin Javidanbardan won the Eppendorf Poster Award at the 6th BioProScale Symposium “Innovative scale-up and scale-down for bioprocess intensification.” The event took place virtually from 29.03. to 31.03.2021. Amin presented his poster with the title “Rapid and cost-effective fabrication of microchromatography integrated with microelectrode impedance sensor.” Amin, a Marie Curie Early-Stage Researcher of the ITN action “CODOBIO,” is enrolled in the Ph.D. program of Biotechnology and Biosciences and is being supervised by Ana Azevedo (iBB-BERG) and João Pedro Conde (INESC-MN), both from the Department of Bioengineering. Congratulations Amin!

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Amin Javidanbardan Wins Best Video-poster Award at IST´s  PhD Open Days

Amin Javidanbardan Wins Best Video-poster Award at IST´s  PhD Open Days | iBB | Scoop.it
Amin Javidanbardan, Marie Curie Early Stage Researcher of the ITN action “CODOBIO”, won the best video-poster award at IST´s  PhD Open Days with a presentation entitled “Microfluidic Chromatography Columns for Design and Development of Continuous Biopharmaceutical Products”. Amin is enrolled in the PhD program of Biotechnology and Biosciences and is being supervised by Ana Azevedo (iBB-BERG) and João Pedro Conde (INESC-MN), both from the Department of Bioengineering.
Congratulations Amin!
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Continuous Aqueous Two-phase Extraction

Continuous Aqueous Two-phase Extraction | iBB | Scoop.it

Aqueous two-phase extraction (ATPE) can bring numerous benefits to the downstream processing of biological products, including high recovery yields, high selectivity and relatively low cost. With biomanufacturing entering an era where continuous processing is regarded as the key solution to increase flexibility and decrease costs, the intrinsic characteristics of ATPE and high degree of integration, makes it highly suitable for continuous processing. In a recent paper published in Fluid Phase Equilibria, Diogo Faria and colleagues from BERG-IBB make a brief review of the history of continuous ATPE, analyse the main devices used in continuous extraction, and discuss the key and future challenges in the development of continuous processes.

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Screening Peptide Affinity Ligands for Fab Fragment Purification by Phage Display

Screening Peptide Affinity Ligands for Fab Fragment Purification by Phage Display | iBB | Scoop.it

Antibody fragments (Fabs) are one of the most applied alternatives to monoclonal antibodies (mAbs), with already four Fab-based therapeutics in the market. Despite their similarity with mAbs, there is no scalable, robust and cost-efficient purification platform yet available. In this work, phage display was applied to find affinity peptides ligands as an effective purification strategy for Fabs. Two different phage biopanning schemes were designed and three peptide affinity ligands with the ability of binding Fab fragments were developed. With the methodology herein described, it is possible to find ligands within short periods of time, being the efficacy of this peptide affinity solution demonstrated in a real column purification scenario. The work  was published in Biotechnology Progress is part of the PhD thesis of André Nascimento and stems from a collaboration between BERG-IBB and Professors Steve Cramer and Pankaj Karande from RPI.

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Oscillatory Reactor for Continuous ATPS Presented at ICB IV

Oscillatory Reactor for Continuous ATPS Presented at ICB IV | iBB | Scoop.it

Diogo Faria, PhD candidate at BIOTECnico Programme in IBB-BERG, gave a poster presentation at the conference "Integrated Continuous Biomanufacturing IV", organized by ECI (Engineering Conferences International), held in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, in October 6-9. The poster was about Continuous Aqueous Two-Phase System Extraction using Oscillatory Flow Reactor. The work was carried out under the supervision of Prof. Ana Azevedo (IBB-BERG) and Prof. Raquel Aires Barros (iBB-BERG), with colaboration of António Ferreira (FEUP).

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1st CODOBIO Consortium Meeting

1st CODOBIO Consortium Meeting | iBB | Scoop.it

The first consortium meeting of the EU-funded ITN CODOBIO: Continuous Downstream Processing of Biologics was held on the 22nd October at IST, Lisbon. The consortium involves 20 participants from Academia, Industry and Regulatory Agencies. Thirty two members were present in the meeting including the 15 Early Stage Researchers. Amin Javidanbardan and Malik Wahab from BERG-iBB had the opportunity to present their PhD projects, which focus on the miniaturization of continuous bioprocesses using microfluidics.

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Sara Rosa to Defend PhD Thesis in Biotechnology and Biosciences

Sara Rosa to Defend PhD Thesis in Biotechnology and Biosciences | iBB | Scoop.it

Sara Lourenço Rosa will be defending her PhD thesis in Biotechnology and Biosciencesat Instituto Superior Técnico, monday the 9th september 2019 (14:30 H, room PA-3). During the last years, and under the supervision of Ana Azevedo from BERG-iBB and Cláudia Lobato-Silva from SCERG-iBB, Sara explored phenyl boronate chromatography as an alternative technique to purify biomolecules such as antibodies. The title of her thesis is "A phenylboronate chromatography based approach as an effective alternative for downstream processing of biomolecules".

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Purification of mAbs in a UF Stirred Cell

Purification of mAbs in a UF Stirred Cell | iBB | Scoop.it

Charged ultrafiltration membranes combined with optimal operating conditions can be used to enable the purification of monoclonal antibodies. Researchers at BERG-iBB (Alexandra Wagner, Marilia Mateus and Ana Azevedo) and BSIRG-IBB (Ana Ferraria and Ana Maria Botelho do Rego) have studied the influence of polyethersulfone membrane modification with polyethyleneimine and operating conditions on the removal of impurities from a mAb-containing cell culture fluid. High purity was consistently observed at pH 9 due to a simultaneous decrease in the transmission of soluble protein and increase in both IgG transmission and adsorptive capacity of the membranes. Click on tittle to learn more in the Journal of Chemical Technology and Biotechnology.

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Ana Azevedo and Carla Carvalho Awarded Scientific Prizes by ULisboa/CGD

Ana Azevedo and Carla Carvalho Awarded Scientific Prizes by ULisboa/CGD | iBB | Scoop.it

The research performed by Ana Azevedo and Carla Carvalho from BERG-iBB was recognized in this year's edition of the ULisboa/CGD Scientific prizes. Ana won the first prize Ex Aequo and Carla received and honorable mention for their work in the category "Biology, Biological Engineering, Biochemistry and Biotechnology". The award ceremony took place on the 8th April.

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Maria João Jacinto to Defend PhD Thesis in Bioengineering

Maria João Jacinto to Defend PhD Thesis in Bioengineering | iBB | Scoop.it

Maria João Jacinto will be defending her PhD thesis in Bioengineering at Instituto Superior Técnico, thursday the 7th March 2019 (10:30 H, room PA3). During the last years, and under the supervision of Raquel Barros and Ana Azevedo from BERG-iBB and Richard Willson from the University of Houston, Maria João focused her efforts on the development of platforms for the downstream processing and detection of VLPs and bacteriophages. The title of her thesis is "Integrative platforms for downstream processing and detection of viral particles”.

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