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Synthetic Biology underpins advances in the bioeconomy

Biological systems - including the simplest cells - exhibit a broad range of functions to thrive in their environment. Research in the Imperial College Centre for Synthetic Biology is focused on the possibility of engineering the underlying biochemical processes to solve many of the challenges facing society, from healthcare to sustainable energy. In particular, we model, analyse, design and build biological and biochemical systems in living cells and/or in cell extracts, both exploring and enhancing the engineering potential of biology. 

As part of our research we develop novel methods to accelerate the celebrated Design-Build-Test-Learn synthetic biology cycle. As such research in the Centre for Synthetic Biology highly multi- and interdisciplinary covering computational modelling and machine learning approaches; automated platform development and genetic circuit engineering ; multi-cellular and multi-organismal interactions, including gene drive and genome engineering; metabolic engineering; in vitro/cell-free synthetic biology; engineered phages and directed evolution; and biomimetics, biomaterials and biological engineering.



BibTex format

author = {Goey, CH and Bell, D and Kontoravdi, C},
doi = {10.1016/j.bej.2019.02.006},
journal = {Biochemical Engineering Journal},
pages = {185--192},
title = {CHO cell cultures in shake flasks and bioreactors present different host cell protein profiles in the supernatant},
url = {},
volume = {144},
year = {2019}

RIS format (EndNote, RefMan)

AB - Several studies on the impact of cell culture parameters on the profile of host cell protein (HCP) impurities have been carried out in shake flasks. Herein, we explore how transferable the findings and conclusions of such investigations are to lab-scale bioreactors. Experiments were performed in both systems in fed-batch mode under physiological temperature and with a shift to mild hypothermia and the impact on key upstream performance indicators was quantified. Under both temperatures, bioreactors produced a richer HCP pool despite the overall concentration being similar at both scales and temperatures. The number of different HCPs detected in bioreactor supernatants was four times higher than that in flasks under physiological temperature and more than eight times higher under mild hypothermia. The origin of HCPs was also altered from mostly naturally secreted proteins in flasks to mainly intracellular proteins in bioreactors at the lower temperature. Although the number of species correlated with apoptotic cell density in bioreactors, this was not the case in flasks. Even though the level of HCP impurities and mAb/HCP concentration ratio were similar under all four conditions with an average of approximately 330 μg HCP/mL culture and 0.3 mg HCP/mg IgG4, respectively, the fact that culture method significantly affects the number of species present in the supernatant can have implications for downstream processing steps.
AU - Goey,CH
AU - Bell,D
AU - Kontoravdi,C
DO - 10.1016/j.bej.2019.02.006
EP - 192
PY - 2019///
SN - 1369-703X
SP - 185
TI - CHO cell cultures in shake flasks and bioreactors present different host cell protein profiles in the supernatant
T2 - Biochemical Engineering Journal
UR -
UR -
VL - 144
ER -