Editorial Article: SelectScience Virtual Biopharmaceuticals Summit: a round up

The SelectScience Virtual Biopharmaceuticals Summit was an interactive forum for scientists and manufacturers to share cutting-edge technology solutions for biopharmaceuticals research and development.

06 Dec 2022

SelectScience Virtual Biopharmaceuticals Summit 2022 logo

The SelectScience® Virtual Biopharmaceuticals Summit took place on November 22, in partnership with BioPhorum. The free-to-attend online event offered an interactive forum for scientists and manufacturers to connect, highlight the latest research, and share cutting-edge technology solutions for biopharmaceuticals research and development.

The Summit sessions took place in two concurrent tracks with Track 1 covering a range of topics in Cell Line Development and Gene Therapy, while Track 2 focused on Bioanalysis Techniques. 

Paul Anderson (Director, Biologics Discovery Automation, Eli Lilly) was the keynote speaker on Track 1 and presented on Single cell antibody discovery using 'Islands of automation'. There were further talks covering cell line development and gene therapy from a broader perspective including how IT can support cell and gene therapies, as well as the validation challenges. Other presentations focused on the applications, challenges and advancements in the field such as applying a matrix approach for potency assay development for in vivo and ex vivo gene therapies, release specifications for plasmids and master cell banks used in gene therapy, and analysis of critical quality attributes of adeno-associated viruses.

Andrew Mahan (Associate Director, Janssen: Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson) was the keynote speaker on Track 2 on Bioanalysis Techniques and presented on Semi-targeted spent media LC-MS assay: Assuring product quality during cell line development for biologics. With ongoing regulatory updates in the bioanalytical landscape, it was insightful to hear the resulting practical implications within laboratories with talks on Pharma compliance, ligand binding assay validation requirements and strategies, as well as the use of biolayer interferometry as an alternative to surface plasmon resonance in a biopharma regulated environment.

Presentations on recent advances in oligo purity and sequence determination by LCMS, developing methods for biosimilarity studies of therapeutic monoclonal antibodies, and a mid-down strategy for the mass spectrometric sequencing of progressively larger nucleic acids, highlighted the challenges and technological developments in bioanalytical laboratories associated with the constantly growing number of modalities for analysis.

It was encouraging to see the continued discussions on the science and the technologies between attendees and speakers following the talks through the Q&A sessions, and in the dedicated networking spaces provided such as the chatting feature and special connect area.

The Summit also included a Poster Hall through with all posters available for download, showcasing some of the most recent research:

  • Petra Bennington and colleagues presented on ‘Industry approaches for implementation of ready to use (RtU) cells in bioassays’
  • Sylvain Demanze and colleagues presented on ‘Automating analytical data batch-processing in Drug Discovery with Mnova Gears’
  • Aliasgar Shahiwala presented on ‘Quality by Design Approach in development of biologics and biosimilars’
  • Bayan Alkhawaja and Andrew G Watts presented on ‘Vectorized conjugates of monoclonal antibodies: Diagnostic and therapeutic applications’.

There were plenty of topical resource materials and videos available through the Summit platform, including eBooks, application notes and vendor resources on products of interest to the community, which attendees were able to add to their virtual ‘Swag Bags’ and forward to their emails for later use. The virtual Exhibit Hall also hosted booths with several manufactures present enabling attendees to view and link through to their latest product and technologies.

Overall, the SelectScience Virtual Biopharmaceuticals Summit offered an interactive space for scientists and manufacturers to share, collaborate and discuss technological solutions for biopharmaceuticals research and development. If you were not able to attend on the day, you can access the presentations on demand.