The aim is to create a single step process to replace ultracentrifugation, which the collaborators claim is expensive, complex and can create bottlenecks in process development during manufacturing scale-up.
Jean-Paul Mangeolle, president of the Bioprocess Division at Millipore, said: "Millipore remains focused on pioneering innovation for the biopharmaceutical industry. Developing new vaccine purification technologies that improve both the efficiency and economics of manufacturing is of paramount importance to us."
Details of the deal
Millipore believes its novel chromatographic technology can improve the purification process and will develop this using egg-based influenza viruses supplied by Microbix. In addition Microbix will give Millipore access to its Virusmax technology.
Virusmax increases yield by harvesting the vaccine which is normally discarded after becoming attached to debris in the allantoic fluid of the chick embryo.
Microbix claims the process is inexpensive to implement and does not create a serious regulatory barrier, owing to the non-toxic substances used in the technique.
Commenting on the use of Virusmax, William Gastle, CEO of Microbix, said: "Use of our unique Virusmax technology will ensure that maximal yields are realized in process development studies and provide greater flexibility in the choice of virus strains for influenza vaccine applications."
The research will be conducted in Millipore's Vaccine Process Research Laboratory in Bedford, MA, US, which has been designed to develop new technologies for conventional vaccine manufacturing and single-use systems.