Cambridge Healthtech Institute’s 3rd Annual

Cell Line Development to Protein Expression

From Gene to Industrial Use

New Dates - 22-23 JULY 2020


The foundations of protein production will be explored in Cambridge Healthtech Institute’s Cell Line Development to Protein Expression conference. What are the steps needed to develop a productive cell line that meets project goals? Each protein and each expression system is different, so which is best to use? This conference will examine the steps that are necessary to establish productive cell lines that ensure robust expression to support the industry’s growing needs.

Final Agenda




10:40 Chairperson’s Opening Remarks



Engineering of Multiple Metabolic Pathways Mediates Improved Productivity in CHO Cells

Nicolas P. Mermod, PhD, Professor & Director, Biology & Medicine, University of Lausanne

We uncovered numerous cellular genes that are overexpressed in CHO cell lines that produce high levels of therapeutic proteins. While some were the consequence of heterologous protein overexpression, others appeared to limit the expression and secretion of heterologous proteins. This was assessed by overexpressing these genes, resulting in increased expression of various therapeutic proteins. Interestingly, several CHO cell metabolic activities were simultaneously limiting in pathways as diverse as cell signaling, response to cellular stress, cytoskeleton organization, and lipid metabolism.


11:05  Cell and Vector Engineering for Biologics Production by CHO Cells: Evaluating Diverse Strategies 

James_DavidDavid C. James, PhD, Professor, Bioprocess Engineering, Chemical and Biological Engineering, University of Sheffield

11:25  Novel Cell Retention Device and System for N-1 Perfusion ProcessesMERCK(1)

Savary_LenaigLénaïg Savary, Upstream Biomanufacturing Engineer, MSAT, MERCK

Adoption of perfusion in N-1 bioreactors yields a reduction in process time and/or increase in manufacturing capacity without increasing volume capacity. Due to recent advances in cell retention technologies, cell line and media development, perfusion becomes a more viable alternative to expand performance beyond what traditional platforms can attain.  This presentation explores the benefits of a pre-sterilized, high-throughput perfusion filtration systems in an N-1 perfusion application and demonstrates scalability from 3 L to 50 L.


11:45 Q&A, Session Wrap-up

12:00 Lunch Break - Come view our virtual Exhibit Hall



12:25 Chairperson’s Remarks

Jarka Glassey, PhD, Professor, Chemical Engineering, Engineering, Newcastle University

12:30 Continuous Processing for Vaccine Manufacturing: Challenges and Opportunities

Yang-PingYangYan-Ping Yang, PhD, Head of Bioprocess Research & Development, North America, Sanofi Pasteur

Over the last decade, there have been significant investments in continuous manufacturing in the pharmaceutical industry, as it holds great promise to lead the reduction of process steps, smaller footprint, higher product quality, and better pharmaceuticals for patients. While it’s still in its early stage, the vaccine industry has embraced this concept and is ready to explore the full advantages associated with this approach. This presentation explores the challenges and opportunities to make continuous vaccine manufacturing a reality.

12:55 Gene Therapy Manufacturing and Technical Development

Blumenthal_DianeDiane Blumenthal, PhD., Head, Technical Development, Spark Therapeutics

In the past few years, several cell and gene therapy products have gained regulatory approval in the US and EU with many more in the pipeline. Manufacturers of cell and gene therapy products must tackle technological challenges under the pressure of short timelines resulting from streamlined clinical development. This presentation will focus on the key technical development challenges facing the industry as product development programs move the into the later stages of process development and scale-up, process performance qualification and ultimately commercialization.

13:20 Q&A, Session Wrap-up, Host intro to special virtual features

13:35 Break Time to view virtual Exhibit Hall



13:55 Chairperson’s Remarks


14:00  Glycoengineering CHO Cell Lines for the Production of Hard-to-Produce Glycoproteins

Voldborg_BjoernBjørn Voldborg, MSc, Director, CHO Cell Line Development, The Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Biosustainability, Technical University of Denmark (DTU)

Using our high-throughput cell-line engineering platform, we have engineered a panel of CHO cells able to produce proteins with specifically designed glycoprofiles. We have used these cells to produce therapeutic proteins that have previously not been possible to produce in CHO cells. This approach can be used to produce therapeutic proteins with better biological properties, such as increased half-life, improved activity, etc.


14:20  Rapid Selection of CHO Clones Secreting Recombinant Antibodies

Devriendt_BertBert Devriendt, PhD, Scientist, Virology, Parasitology, Immunology, Physiology, Ghent University

To enable large-scale recombinant antibody production, a high-producer cell line is essential. Selecting such a cell line is, however, time-consuming and labor-intensive. By combining the design of a tricistronic vector expressing GFP and both antibody chains, separated by a GT2A sequence, with single-cell sorting and automated image analysis, a CHO cell line was rapidly selected producing high amounts of recombinant antibodies, which showed minimal degradation.

14:40  Cell Counting in Process StandardizationChemometec

Berg ChristianChristian Berg, Global Product Manager, Marketing, Chemometec

Cell Counting is often overlooked, but is essential for reproducibility in experiments, assays and manufacturing processes. Cell counting is a challenging technique, with many pitfalls, that can delay entire projects. The NucleoCounter NC-202, solve all of these challenges, and standardize cell counting across organizations

15:00 Q&A, Session Wrap-up

15:15 Virtual Happy Hour in our Virtual Exhibit Hall




9:00 Chairperson’s Remarks

Bjørn Voldborg, MSc, Director, CHO Cell Line Development, The Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Biosustainability, Technical University of Denmark (DTU)


Manipulating the Epitranscriptome as a Means to Impact Recombinant Protein Production in Mammalian Cells

Barron_NiallNiall Barron, PhD, Professor, Principal Investigator, Cell Engineering, National Institute for Bioprocessing Research and Training (NIBRT)

Epigenetic modifications to the nucleotides in RNA species have generated considerable interest recently. The role of methylation in particular, including characterising the proteins that add (writers), remove (erasers), and interpret (readers) this epigenetic mark, is considered. This talk will consider its potential as an enhancer of mRNA translation and how this mechanism might be applied to improving recombinant protein expression systems.


9:25 Strategies for Production and Characterization of Multi-Protein Complexes: Top-Down vs. Bottom-Up Strategies

Poterszman_ArnaudArnaud Poterszman, PhD, Research Director, Integrated Structural Biology, Institut de Génétique et de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire (IGBMC)

Although technologies for production of complexes have been tremendously improved, sample preparation is still a major bottleneck for structural biology and functional analysis both in academia and industry. Using the 10 subunits transcription/DNA repair factor TFIIH, I will illustrate reconstitution of multisubunit complexes using the baculovirus expression system and characterization of endogenous assemblies from CRISPR/Cas9-edited cell lines.

9:45  GlycoExpress® - An Alternative Host for Difficult to Express ProteinsGlycotope

Goralczyk_VickyVicky Goralczyk, PhD, Director, Cell Line and Bioprocess Development, R&D, Glycotope GmbH

Bio-pharma development is shifting rapidly from classical IgG molecules to more challenging complex biopharmaceuticals like bispecifics or non-IgG molecules. With CHO being a good production cell line for IgG molecules, they might fail to produce more challenging candidates. The GlycoExpress® (GEX®) system represents an ideal alternative for the production these difficult to express protein molecules and will provide case studies which demonstrate the superiority in productivity and product quality vs CHO cell expression.



10:05 Q&A, Session Wrap-up

10:20 Break Time to View our Virtual Exhibit Hall


10:45 Chairperson’s Remarks

Bjørn Voldborg, MSc, Director, CHO Cell Line Development, The Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Biosustainability, Technical University of Denmark (DTU)

10:50  Precise Genome Engineering of Mammalian Cells for Antibody Expression and Screening**

Parola_CristinaCristina Parola, PhD, Scientist, Biologics Research, Sanofi-Aventis Recherche & Développement, Sanofi

By taking advantage of CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing, we have developed a novel mammalian cell system for the expression of full-length antibodies. The Plug-and-(Dis)play (PnP) workflow included the initial generation of a platform cell line in which a novel specificity is introduced by means of a synthetic antibody. Subsequently, we optimized HDR efficiency to render the system amenable to antibody discovery and engineering; specifically, we were able to display libraries for the discovery of antibodies from immunized animals, and to affinity mature a known antibody by screening a library of random mutagenesis variants.

11:10  Speeding Up Cell-Line Development for the Expression of mAbs and Bispecific Antibody Formats

Martin Bertschinger, PhD, Deputy Director, Cell Sciences, Ichnos Sciences, Inc.

In many cases, the cell-line development (CLD) process is on the critical path of projects towards IND filings. In order to shorten the time required to start clinical trials, there is a strong interest in speeding up the duration of the CLD process. Ichnos Sciences has evaluated the implementation of a single-cell deposition device in the CLD process. This presentation will provide a critical review of this technology with regards to the desired shortening of timelines, as well as clonal derivation (“monoclonality”), productivity, product quality, and expression stability of the resulting cell populations.

11:30  A Breakthrough Cell Count and Viability Label-free Method for High-throughput Cell Culture Monitoring in BioreactorsIprasense

ESTEBAN GeoffreyGeoffrey Esteban, CEO, IPRASENSE

The historical Trypan Blue exclusion method for determining cell count and viability have limitations such as throughput, sample volume, and lack of repeatability. We illustrate applications where the new label-free NORMA technology responds to these challenges and is seamlessly integrated for High Throughput monitoring of cell cultures.


11:50 Q&A, Session Wrap-up

12:05 Lunch Break, Virtual Exhibit Hall



12:30 Chairperson’s Remarks

Niall Barron, PhD, Professor, Principal Investigator, Cell Engineering, National Institute for Bioprocessing Research and Training (NIBRT)


12:35  How to Be Good at Being Single? Evaluation of VIPS Single-Cell Printer for Generation of Stable Cell Lines

Kozejova_GabrielaGabriela Kozejova, MSc, Senior Scientist, Protein and Cellular Sciences, R&D Platform Technology & Science, GSK Medicines Research Centre

Stable cell-line generation is a time-consuming and labour-intensive process. We report the impact of implementing systems such as a Verified In-situ Plate Seeding system (VIPS™) linked with the Cell Metric imager. This resulted in an increase in throughput, reduced timelines, and provided clonality assurance for our stable cell-line processes.

12:55  A Perfusion-Based Approach for the Continuous Manufacturing of VLP-Based Recombinant Vaccines in HEK293 Cell Culture

Laura CerveraLaura Cervera, PhD, Postdoctoral Fellow, d’Enginyeria Química, Biològica i Ambiental, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona

Vaccines based on virus-like particles (VLPs) have gained interest over the last years due to their high immunogenic capacity; the advantages they present compared to traditional vaccines; and their versatility when combining different antigens. Cell specific perfusion rate (CSPR), concentration of DNA and PEI, and time of multiple transfections were optimized using design of experiments in a HEK 293 suspension culture perfusion process. The VLPs obtained were quantified and characterized using a new SRFM-based method in crude supernatants. 

13:15  Glycoengineering of the Human Embryonic Kidney FreeStyle 293-F Cell Line towards Improved Bioavailablity of Recombinant Coagulation Factor VII

Uhler_RicoRico Uhler, MSc, Scientist, Cell Line Development, Octapharma Biopharmaceuticals GmbH

In order to increase the bioavailability of coagulation Factor VII, the N-glycosylation machinery of the human embryonic kidney, FreeStyle 293-F (HEK 293 F), cell line was engineered using CRISPR/Cas9. N-acetylgalactosamine transferase knock-outs led to the replacement of N-acetylgalactosamine with galactose and increased sialylation. Knock-in of the sialic acid transferase, ST6Gal1, further increased sialylation of Factor VII and greatly reduced glycosylation-related heterogeneity of Factor VII molecules. Factor VII produced in the engineered cell lines showed reduced asialoglycoprotein receptor binding in vitro and increased bioavailability in vivo.

13:15 Q&A, Session Wrap-up

13:30 Break Time to view our Virtual Exhibit Hall

13:45 Breakout Discussion Groups

14:45 Close of Summit

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