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Press conference: Successful implementation of PTR-MS into bioprocess monitoring

The Austrian Center of Industrial Biotechnology (ACIB) with Ionimed Analytik as company partner have presented the success story  “ A breathtaking approach “ – Successful implementation of proton transfer reaction mass spectrometry (PTR-MS) into bioprocess monitoring on a press conference, 01. Juni 2012 Cafe Central, Innsbruck (Pressekonferenz „Verräterische Atemluft“ Bedeutung des ACIB in Tirol).

The complexity of bioprocesses, with living cells as production systems, represents the major bottleneck on the way to rational bioprocess design and control. In view of regulatory issues and initiatives, comprehensive process understanding is essential and consequently new technologies must be introduced to bioprocess monitoring. PTR-MS technology from the SME Ionimed (now part of IONICON) was identified as a promising technique for monitoring of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the fermenter offgas. In collaboration with two pharmaceutical companies, in frame of the ACIB, PTR-MS technology was implemented for bioprocess monitoring for the first time.

The application of PTR-MS enables the non-invasive real-time analysis of VOCs in fermentation processes. The developed PTR-MS biotech system consists of a specialized sample inlet system in combination with a high sensitive PTR-MS.  This system using the soft PTR ionisation technology, perfectly matches the challenging requirements for real-time measurement of complex VOC mixtures.

By taking the “breath” of a growing cell culture it provides direct access to metabolism related information. VOCs emitted by bacterial respiration can be directly assigned to metabolic reactions. The acquired, highly relevant, process information enables design of advanced process control strategies to improve production processes.