With vaccine manufacturers working towards the prevention of the spread of SARS-CoV-2, Microfluidics has taken steps to support the industry during the pandemic.
On April 30th, Microfluidics hosted a teleconference for over 60 academic and commercial professionals from the Indian vaccine industry. The purpose of the webinar was to give an overview of the different types of vaccine adjuvant technology and LNPs and demonstrate how they can be manufactured on a production scale.
In the session Steve Mesite, our Director of Microfluidics Machines, covered how Microfluidizer® Processor High Shear Homogenisers can be used for Vaccine Production, to produce antigens, adjuvants and delivery systems – the three main components of a vaccine that make it more effective.
Why Microfluidizer® Technology is Ideal for Developing and Producing the Critical Ingredients in Vaccines
During the talk, Steve identified various reasons why Microfluidizer® processing is helpful for vaccine development:
- It is used to create nanoemulsions, a key element of vaccine adjuvant technology and lipid nanoparticles which improves antigen stability, efficacy and ability to control the release of the antigen.
- Every particle moving through the Microfluidizer® processor receives the same treatment, resulting in a consistent formula regardless of batch size.
- Microfluidics™ machines offer consistent processing for cell disruption, resulting in high levels of protein recovery.
- The positive results are achievable at production scale thanks to the variety of processors in the Microfluidics™ range.
Steve then showcased three different case studies conducted with Microfluidizer® processors for producing adjuvants, antigens and delivery systems.
Vaccine Adjuvant Production: Squalene-Based Nanoemulsions
The first case study covered the preparation of a squalene-based nanoemulsion, used as a flu vaccine adjuvant.
It showed how with only two passes through a Microfluidizer® processor, a crude emulsion can be converted into uniform droplets.
The adjuvant helped the vaccine to produce consistently higher levels of antibody in patients – around 100 times higher – when compared with patients who received a vaccine without adjuvant.
This is critical for pandemic vaccines, with increased efficacy meaning less antigen is required to build immunity in patients, so more doses can be produced from the batch.
Steve also demonstrated the ability to scale up to production quantities from the lab: the processing in this study was replicated at 5L/min with the same result.
Lipid Nanoparticles as an Antigen Delivery System
Next, Steve presented a study on how to make complex lipid nanoparticles (LNPs), which are required for the delivery of next-generation antigens.
In the study, a liposome was made from a phospholipid via a Microfluidizer® processor. Steve explained how the Microfluidizer® was able to transform multi-layer vesicles into unilamellar vesicles which delivered the antigen more effectively.
He also explained that controlling the formulation of lipid nanoparticles (LNP) can determine how quickly the antigen moves away from the injection site to spread around the body.
Harvesting Recombinant Antigens Using Cell Disruption
The final case study showed a common application for our customers: how a Microfluidizer® processor can be used to process recombinant antigens through cell disruption.
Steve demonstrated the versatility of Microfluidizer® technology by showcasing the results of three different cell disruptions. Yeast, E.coli, and mammalian cells were all lysed effectively in just a few passes – between one (for mammalian cells) and ten (for yeast).
These case studies are helping vaccine developers in their fight against Covid-19.
Watch our webinar in full below