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MSSI Research Forum - Thursday, 12 May at 12h00

MSSI Research Forum - Thursday, 12 May at 12h00


Dr Johannes Buyel, Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME, Germany


Plant-derived Biopharmaceutical Proteins – An Alternative to Conventional Cell-culture Based Approaches


Biopharmaceutical proteins already have a major impact on modern healthcare systems, e.g. providing potent therapeutics for cancer treatment, and their importance is likely to increase further. However, the production of such proteins is time consuming, laborious and cost-intensive. Additionally, the access to the corresponding medicines is often limited to developed countries. Therefore, alternative expression systems and streamlined product and process development strategies have to be investigated and evaluated to broaden the accessibility of such safe and potent medicines. Plants offer several unique advantages for the large scale manufacture of biopharmaceuticals, such as low upstream costs and a good safety profile, but the product purification can be challenging due to cell debris and host cell proteins interfering with clarification and purification respectively. This presentation will provide an overview about the methods that have been developed to overcome these limitations and highlight which approaches are currently being pursued to accelerate a successful product and process development in plant molecular pharming.


From 2003 to 2006 Johannes Buyel conducted his Bachelor studies in Molecular Biotechnology at the RWTH Aachen University, Germany, focusing on plant biotechnology. In his masters he went to the University of Lund (2008), Sweden, and the Fraunhofer Center for Molecular Biotechnology (2009) in Newark, Delaware to study cell culture techniques and downstream processing respectively. In 2009, he returned to the RWTH Aachen University and started his PhD working on the modelling of transient expression in plants and the subsequent purification of the associated recombinant proteins under the supervision of Professor Rainer Fischer. During his PhD he joined the laboratories of Professor Steven Cramer (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY) and Professor Jürgen Hubbuch (Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Karlsruhe, Germany) as a visiting scientist. After finishing his PhD in 2013 he continued his research as a postdoctoral fellow until he secured a Fraunhofer Attract Research grant in 2014, starting his own laboratory in early 2015 at the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME in Aachen, Germany. His lab focuses on the integrated optimization of recombinant gene expression in different hosts and the subsequent purification processes using rational, mechanistic models as well as descriptive approaches (e.g. design-of-experiments, DoE). In late 2015 he was promoted and became head of department for the Integrated Production Platforms department at Fraunhofer IME. The focus of the department is the optimization and scale-up of production processes for biopharmaceuticals such as monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) under good manufacturing practice (GMP) conditions.

DATE:           Thursday, 12 May 2016

TIME:            12h00

VENUE:        MSG-025 MSSI Building Extension


For further information, please contact: deanse@ul.ie