The new system – the Wave 25 – is designed for seed train, process development and small scale biomanufacturing operations and is the first new Wave system developed since the firm was acquired by GE in 2007.
BioPharma-Reporter.com first saw the Wave 25 platform at Biotechnica in Hannover, Germany in October where GE Healthcare life science marketing manager, Neil Ross, highlighted some of the its key features.
“You’ve got three components. The bioreactor itself…which has a working volume of up to 25 litres and a smallest working volume of - give or take - 200ml. You’ve got some control modules which are basically some pumps for either feed and harvest or acid base addition…and a unit for measuring dissolved oxygen, pH and gas mix.”
“The third element is a laptop running Unicorn software,” Ross continued explaining that, while the IT platform maybe not quite as legendary as its mythical namesake it has been a mainstay for GE for several decades.
“The Unicorn platform has been around for a long time, back to the Amersham Pharmacia days, and has been used to control all our chromatography equipment and subsequently almost everything else we make.
“What it [Unicorn] offers is really extensive data monitoring, an intuitive screen layout… and also the ability to programme methods, which wasn’t possible before.”
Big Pharma sales
In the few weeks since Biotechnica, Wave 25 has performed well according to a company spokesman who spoke with BioPharma-Reporter.com earlier this week.
“We have already sold instruments to a range of customers from big pharma, who use the system in seed train and small scale production of mAbs, to smaller companies and Universities, who use the system for process development and research. We can’t provide names of companies or institutions at this stage.”
The firm declined to say how much the new system costs, explaining that: “For commercial reasons and because every customer is situated in a different site with a different cost structure we can’t give specific details.”