Category: Automation and High-Throughput Technologies

1304-E - Evaluation and commissioning of an automated cryovial dispensing system in a core cell culture facility

Wednesday, February 7, 2018
11:30 AM - 12:30 PM

Cell banks are a vital part of many research, drug discovery and bioprocessing workflows. The main bottleneck in generating cell banks is dispensing cell suspensions into cryovials as quickly as possible in order to minimise the cytotoxic effect of cryopreservatives. Performing this task manually is time consuming, can limit the size of cell banks, and put users at risk of occupational injury. The aim of this poster was to evaluate whether implementation of an automated cryovial filling system improve the quality and productivity of cell culture operations.
The fill-it system decaps, dispenses, and recaps racks of cryovials via a single-use sterile tube set. Racks of cryovials prepared using the automated system were evaluated for inter- and intra-rack consistency dispense accuracy and compared to vials prepared manually with no significant difference being observed. Cell viability and growth of cryopreserved vials prepared using automation were assessed immediately post-revival, during passage 72 hours after revival, and during a 19 day cell expansion period. Over this period of time, cell growth was consistent and cell viability was maintained above 90%. Automating the preparation of cryovials also significantly reduced the time taken to generate cell banks of a given size – a bank of 200 vials was created in 20mins rather than the 75mins taken to dispense manually.
To conclude, generation of research and manufacturing cell banks can be made in a more efficient manner by implementing a bench top automated cryovial filling system without having a detriment of cell number and viability.

Dave Thomas

Product Manager
Royston, England, United Kingdom

Dave Thomas is a Product Manager at Sartorius with responsibility for managing the automated cell culture platforms. He has a background in cell biology basic research and experience working in small biotech, large pharma, and contract research organisations where he was involved in assay development, screening, and automation projects. At TAP Biosystems (now part of the Sartorius Stedim Biotech Group), he initially provided application support for their cell culture portfolio before acquiring responsibility for managing the strategic and tactical activities related to these products.