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21st.Bio has opened a new pilot plant facility at its Danish headquarters, aimed at accelerating bioproduction upscaling for companies worldwide.

The facility enables 21st.Bio to provide comprehensive services, from strain construction to industrial production upscaling, to global customers.

By integrating world-class technology with fermentation capacity, the company aims to expedite the upscaling process for clients, ensuring a swift transition to large-scale production in a cost-effective and risk-mitigated manner.

Thomas Schmidt, co-founder and CEO at 21st.Bio, said: “In this industry, upscaling mistakes cost a lot of money and time. For our customers, it’s all about getting the next step right. The ability to increase productivity when also moving up in scale is what distinguishes good from great.”

The pilot facility offers a crucial intermediary step between internal lab-scale fermentation and large-scale production. Equipped with state-of-the-art technology tailored to mimic industrial production settings, the facility enables customers to test various process aspects and build confidence for large-scale production.

With a fermentation capacity exceeding 3,000 litres, the facility is primed to support the optimisation of processes for the production of recombinant proteins and peptides, with applications spanning nutrition, food and beverages, agriculture, biomaterials and biopharma.

Thorvald Ullum, CTO at 21st.Bio, added: “Our goal with this pilot was to build a mini factory, to best prepare customers for large-scale industrial production. We therefore wanted the process equipment to mimic what customers will find in their next step with large-scale biomanufacturing – only downsized to a pilot scale. Our customers work alongside our experts in the pilot plant to test various process aspects as well as build skills and confidence for their own large-scale production.”

The inauguration of the pilot plant witnessed the participation of notable figures from political, financial and bio-industrial sectors, including Margrethe Vestager, executive vice president of the European Commission. Vestager highlighted the transformative potential of biotech solutions in addressing key global challenges and underscored Europe’s commitment to fostering innovation in the biomanufacturing sector.

Europe’s dedication to bolstering the biotech sector was further emphasised with the European Commission’s recent initiatives outlined in the ‘Communication on Biotech and Biomanufacturing’. These actions aim to streamline regulatory frameworks, enhance support for scale-up, and stimulate investments in biotechnologies and biomanufacturing.

21st.Bio establishes pilot plant facility to propel biotech innovation

Sian Yates

10 May 2024

21st.Bio establishes pilot plant facility to propel biotech innovation

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