New ambr 15 micro bioreactor system provides enhanced microbial strain screening

Comprises 24 single-use stirred micro bioreactors

ambr 15 full system image with vessel in front

Sartorius Stedim Biotech (SSB) has added the ambr 15 fermentation system, an automated micro bioreactor system designed to enhance microbial strain screening, to its portfolio.

The new system comprises 24 single-use stirred micro bioreactors (each with 8–12mL working volume) integrated to an automated workstation. It offers parallel processing and walk-away control of 24 micro bioreactors, providing fermentation scientists with consistent results from an enhanced early stage screening platform.

ambr 15 fermentation delivers high oxygen transfer rates, rapid pH and feed additions and is suitable for assessing the effects of different strains with microbial cultures. It measures pH and DO every 12 seconds and there are pumped liquid lines for base and feed addition in each micro bioreactor, enabling tight pH control and a semi-continuous feed supply.

Additionally, the 10mL working volume allows multiple samplings throughout the fermentation run to assess culture growth and protein production, thus providing more detailed process understanding.

The single-use micro bioreactor vessel contains an impeller suitable for fermentation and provides enhanced capability compared with shaking culture systems. The pH range of 6–8 is suitable for biopharm E. coli applications and cultures with similar requirements. As the ambr 15 vessels are single use and supplied sterile this eliminates cleaning and sterilisation time, thus decreasing turnaround times between runs by many hours.

Dr Barney Zoro, ambr Product Manager at SSB, said: 'Scientists have been trying to model microbial fermentation and screen microbial strains using shake plates and flasks but these devices are poor early stage models as they are not able to achieve representative cell densities, and do not allow monitoring and control of pH or DO.

'With these issues in mind, we developed ambr 15 fermentation and have data showing system consistency, repeatability and predictive selection of strains. This demonstrates that the system is an excellent tool for enhanced screening applications and we are confident that fermentation scientists will significantly reduce their time and resource demands when performing enhanced microbial strain selection studies using an ambr 15 fermentation system.'

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