Use of Recombinant Proteins to Create a Blood-free Media Formulation

We recently finished our Ask the Expert discussion, “Incorporating recombinant proteins to produce blood-free media formulations for therapeutic cell types”. During this Ask the Expert session, we discussed transitioning cells to blood free formulations, cell health and growth in blood-free medium and associated benefits.

Recent advancements in recombinant protein expression have enabled the cost-effective inclusion of recombinant proteins, such as albumin and transferrin in media formulations. These recombinant proteins can effectively replace human plasma or plasma-derived proteins and provide the benefit of reducing variability and risk of contamination from adventitious agents.

In this Ask the Expert session, Randall Alfano, Ph.D., Vice President of Product Development, provided insight on the use of recombinant albumin and transferrin to development blood-free media formulations for cell therapy production. InVitria has been successful in helping clinical development phase vaccine, stem, and immunotherapy groups to remove all blood-derived components from the manufacturing processes by formulating custom blood-free media formulations that have been designed around recombinant albumin and transferrin.

Below is a sneak peek of the discussion, for a full transcript, please see – Ask the Expert – Incorporating recombinant proteins to produce blood-free media formulations for therapeutic cell types.

Question:

Have you discovered any significant differences in cell health and growth between use of recombinant and native supplements?

The Answer:

Overall, we have not seen significant differences in cell health and growth between recombinant and native supplements. However, there are particular instances where we have seen better growth kinetics in the blood-free media versus xeno-free SFM and serum-containing media. This is due to the presence of undefined components in native supplements that are actually having adverse effects on cell growth.

Question

How has the transition from xeno-free or FBS supplemented media to your formulations been? Is it a difficult transition for the cells?

Answer

Typically transition from xeno-free or FBS -supplemented media is straightforward. With direct adaptation, cells usually adapt within a passage and do well in the blood-free media in subsequent passages. However, adaptation is cell-type specific and some cell types require a step-wise gradual transition from xeno-free media to blood-free.