As a leader in advanced materials for filtration, Hollingsworth & Vose (H&V) offers a range of filter media solutions suitable for use in biopharmaceutical operations. 

What Is the Role of Filtration in the Biopharmaceuticals Industry?

Biopharmaceuticals is one of the fastest-growing industries and has the highest R&D reinvestment rate of all business sectors. It has produced nearly 200 FDA-approved therapeutics and numerous monoclonal antibodies (mAbs), which are used to treat various diseases, such as cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease, psoriasis, anemia, renal failure, lymphoma, and countless other ailments. The production of these protein products is divided into two types of operations: upstream and downstream. Upstream operations are performed during fermentation, while downstream operations are performed after the compounds are harvested from fermentation tanks. Filtration plays a key role in both of them. While the techniques and technologies are similar to those used in breweries, they are more complex and scaled up. 

Which Current Biopharmaceuticals Trends Are Affecting Filtration Solutions? 

The biopharmaceutical industry is constantly evolving with new technologies, biological materials, and chemistries regularly being developed, tested, and incorporated into production. Some of the major trends affecting filtration today are: 

  • Safety standards and quality regulations. Regulatory organizations, such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), provide guidelines on product safety and production standards to ensure public health, safety, and wellness. In addition to following ISO 9001, H&V uses an internally developed version of Hazard Analysis, Critical Control Points (HACCP) for products used in the biopharmaceutical market. 
  • Increased output. The metric used to evaluate the performance of biopharmaceutical products is grams per liter. From 0.20 grams per liter in the 1980s to over 3 grams per liter for some products in the 2020s, H&V filtration solutions help cartridge makers put the right product with the proper balance of flux and efficiency in the hands of users.
  • Scaled production. The production process for biopharmaceutical products starts at the lab bench and ends at patient use. H&V products are used at multiple points in the supply chain to ensure consistent products throughout development.
  • Reduced capital expenditures. Production is expensive. However, improved flux can increase yields with reduced physical infrastructure. Trupor® improves performance in microfiltration steps to reduce the need for future plant spending.
  • Single-use systems (SUS). Single-use systems (SUS) reduce the risk of contamination from cleaning and allow for quicker changeovers between product lines. H&V products are designed to be reliable and competitively priced to meet SUS needs.
  • Innovative products. Monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) have driven biopharma growth for decades. Today, mRNA technologies are growing, and many more therapeutics are on the horizon. Each of these technologies creates new fluid streams, challenges, and opportunities for improved performance to deliver better outcomes for patients. Products like Trupor® highlight how H&V’s two centuries of porous material innovations have produced new and differentiated filtration solutions to solve industry challenges.
  • Performance data and predictions. Microbiology and human health are complex. Working with materials that are more uniform and predictable with data science helps accelerate product development. Products like Trupor® have superior pore size uniformity, making them easier to specify and use.
  • Outsourcing. As biopharmaceutical companies grow, many operations are often outsourced, creating extremely complex supply chains that can affect product quality. Better filtration processes and filter media ensure uniformity and safety throughout the supply chain. 

Why Choose H&V’s Biopharmaceutical Filter Media Solutions?

At Hollingsworth & Vose, we offer a wide variety of advanced filtration solutions. Our products used in the biopharmaceuticals industry include:

  • Trupor®. Trupor® is our sub-micron family of products. The products’ highly uniform pore size from 1.2 micron to 0.2 micron enables superior flux and low-pressure production, improving yields and increasing the output of protein in grams per liter. They can be co-pleated with other microporous membranes to increase life. Industry-standard polymers with low protein binding to improve throughput and yields.
  • Meltblown products. Our meltblown liquid filtration products are used as pre-filters in SUS applications. They can be used as part of a filter train or co-pleated with a tighter membrane. 

Both our Trupor® and meltblown grades are capable of gamma sterilization, making them suitable for use in many sensitive applications.

At H&V, we are committed to creating innovative filtration solutions for our customers in the biopharmaceutical industry and beyond. We understand the need for sustainable products to create a cleaner and healthier world, which is why we focus on developing and manufacturing products that are sustainably and ethically produced. To learn more about our filtration solutions, contact us today.

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