Novel electrodynamic oscillation technique enables enhanced mass transfer and mixing for cultivation in micro-bioreactor

Lasse J. Frey, David Vorländer, D. Rasch, Hendrik Ostsieker, B. Müller, Moritz Schulze, René Schenkendorf, T. Mayr, Jan-Hendrik Grosch, R. Krull*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Micro‐bioreactors (MBRs) have become an indispensable part for modern bioprocess development enabling automated experiments in parallel while reducing material cost. Novel developments aim to further intensify the advantages as dimensions are being reduced. However, one factor hindering the scale‐down of cultivation systems is to provide adequate mixing and mass transfer. Here, vertical oscillation is demonstrated as an effective method for mixing of MBRs with a reaction volume of 20 μL providing adequate mass transfer. Electrodynamic exciters are used to transduce kinetic energy onto the cultivation broth avoiding additional moving parts inside the applied model MBR. The induced vertical vibration leads to oscillation of the liquid surface corresponding to the frequency and displacement. On this basis, the resonance frequency of the fluid was identified as the most decisive factor for mixing performance. Applying this vertical oscillation method outstanding mixing times below 1 s and exceptionally high oxygen transport with volumetric mass transfer coefficients (kLa) above 1,000/hr can be successfully achieved and controlled. To evaluate the applicability of this vertical oscillation mixing for low volume MBR systems, cultivations of Escherichia coli BL21 as proof‐of‐concept were performed. The dissolved oxygen was successfully online monitored to assure any avoidance of oxygen limitations during the cultivation. The here presented data illustrate the high potential of the vertical oscillation technique as a flexible measure to adapt mixing times and oxygen transfer according to experimental demands. Thus, the mixing technique is a promising tool for various biological and chemical micro‐scale applications still enabling adequate mass transfer
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere2827
JournalBiotechnology Progress
Volume35
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Fields of Expertise

  • Human- & Biotechnology

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