Scientists from Massachusetts Institute of Technology created a portable biogenerator able to synthesise a single dose of protein medicine. You can find a detailed description of the development in a scientific journal Nature Communications.
The device created by American scientists, is actually a set of different containers with genetically modified yeast fungus Pichia pastoris, which can grow fast on simple and not expensive medium, produce a great quantity of protein, perform post-translational modification of different medicine (for instance, glycosylation) and secrete proteins into extracellular space that simplifies the process of their rectification.
After adding water into reactor, which contains a certain chemical substance, yeast starts to synthesize a necessary protein drug, which then is washed up from the container together with cell culture using a special filter. Besides, during the process the fungus cells are not spent up and after the container’s washing-up they can be ready for adding other chemical.
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As researchers assert with the help of P. pastoris they can cultivate more than 500 different biological preparations. According to scientists, a portable biogenerator can be used to synthesize protein medicine during military operations, emergencies, infection outbreaks and in remote areas.
At present, the device that was funded by Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) of Pentagon is ready for commercial usage. Besides, developers are working at improving it, paying special attention to further possibilities of different medicine production.