Editors' Picks of Pharmaceutical Science & Technology Innovations
The production lines that create small- and large-molecule dosage forms can be long and complex. Each step of the process
must be monitored carefully to ensure that the resulting drug product meets its specifications and is free from contaminants.
This month's products help manufacturers understand and control their production processes. Updated software from Yokogawa
makes it easier than before for users to find and view process data. Mettler Toledo's workstation allows operators to ensure
the safety of chemical reactions. Personnel can monitor several cell-culturing processes in real time with Stratophase's optical
Control system eases access to information
Version R4.03 of Yokogawa's (Sugar Land, TX) Centum VP production-control system incorporates an enhanced operator interface
to batch software. Operators now can locate, deploy, and monitor recipes in fewer keystrokes than before. The interface also
displays parameters such as elapsed time, unit status, and operation identification in one overview screen when a control
recipe is running. Users thus do not have to seek information in several locations.
Centum VP software Yokogawa www.yokogawa.com
In addition, the Centum VP software's operator interface uses frames and structured windows to simplify access to data and
displays. Users can move between tabs with keystrokes to find information quickly, rather than calling up a new display or
linking to a separate display. Yokogawa also has modified the software's trend display system. A single screen allows users
to compare batches' performance with that of a reference batch.
Technology allows real-time monitoring of cell cultures
Stratophase's (Romsey, UK) SpectroSens optical microchips allow real-time, in-line monitoring of cell-culturing processes.
Because the technology can monitor several parallel processes from a single control unit, it is appropriate for environments
that use multiple bioreactors for development, pilot, or commercial-scale production. The technology's optical microchip sensors
can be incorporated easily into multiple-use insertion probes or disposable probe formats. The output signal from SpectroSens
optical microchips helps personnel identify and maintain optimal growth conditions.
SpectroSens optical microchips Stratophase www.stratophase.com
Workstation enables control of strong reactions
Mettler Toledo's (Zürich) RC1e process-safety workstation enables users to assess and control chemical reactions for creating
active pharmaceutical ingredients. The workstation is based on heat-flow calorimetry, and its integrated measuring devices
provide accurate and reproducible measurements of process parameters such as temperature, pressure, and pH. The unit tracks
heat data in real time and allows users to optimize process parameters while a reaction is in progress.
RC1e process-safety workstation Mettler Toledo http://us.mt.com
Using information collected by the thermostat, the system calculates data such as heat transfer coefficients, specific heats,
heat-flow rates, and thermal accumulation. The workstation converts basic data into crucial safety information. The safety
runaway graph describes failure scenarios and helps users avoid runaway reactions, and a graph indicates the process's level
The system is controlled by flexible software that integrates with online analytical tools. Operators can run predefined,
automated procedures; directly control individual process steps with the system; or combine both approaches.