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Researchers use 3D printing technology to print bioreactors to promote bioprocess development

2024-01-03 11:44

A recent study demonstrated a 3D printed disposable bioreactor that enhances the development of upstream biological processes by achieving real-time growth monitoring. A paper in the journal Processes provides a detailed introduction to this bioreactor, which is tailored for mammalian and microbial cultures and utilizes additive manufacturing technology to manufacture radiation sterilized containers. Its design differs from traditional bioreactors, treating the geometric shape of the container as a variable element, which was previously limited by traditional manufacturing methods.

The working volume of this bioreactor is 90 milliliters, integrating a fully disposable pH and dissolved oxygen sensor, as well as an online biomass sensor suitable for mammalian and microbial cultivation. This sensor arrangement allows for the conversion of online biomass measurements into TCD and OD600 values, consistent with offline measurements, thus achieving effective monitoring of the growth stage. The uniqueness of this bioreactor lies in its suspended magnetic stirrer, which does not require a penetrating stirring shaft, thereby minimizing the risk of pollution.


The main results of the study indicate that there is no leaching of growth inhibitory substances from the container material, indicating that the bioreactor is suitable for sensitive biological processes. Future improvement suggestions include enhancing the cooling capacity of the system, especially in processes such as E. coli cultivation.


This study is of great significance for the development of biotechnology. It emphasizes the potential of additive manufacturing in bioreactor design, advocating the geometric shape of the container as an optimizable parameter. This viewpoint opens up new avenues for customized bioprocess solutions, breaking through the limitations of traditional manufacturing technologies and improving the production and research of biopharmaceuticals.