Cell Culture Engineering XVI

An ECI Continuing Series

May 6-11, 2018
Saddlebrook Resort
Tampa, Florida, USA

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Call for Abstracts:  Oral-October 14, Poster-October 21

Call for Nominations for the 2018 Cell Culture Engineering Award

Call for Nominations:  Martin Sinacore Outstanding Young Investigator Award

Please forward this link to colleagues who may be interested in the conference topic.

About This Conference

Since 1988, the Cell Culture Engineering conferences have been held bi-annually and have developed into the leading global venue for the academic, industrial and regulatory communities for intensive interactions and debates to create solutions for improving human health and life by enabling rapid development and high quality manufacturing of an ever increasing number of viral vaccines, cell therapies, recombinant proteins and monoclonal antibodies. The 2018 conference, the 16th conference in this highly successful series, will be held at the beautiful Saddlebrook Resort in Tampa, Florida.  

This Cell Culture Engineering XVI conference will bring together about 350 selected participants from top academic, industrial and governmental groups from all over the world. We will celebrate the tradition of high quality and relevant accomplishments and debate future solutions in the area of animal cell culture science and engineering. Consistent with this excellent tradition, the scientific program will consist of invited and solicited oral presentations, extensive poster sessions, and workshops. Future updates to this website will detail the scientific program topics and call for oral and poster presentation abstract submissions.

Conference Organization


A. Robinson, PhD, Tulane University asr@tulane.edu
R. Venkat, PhD, MedImmune    rvv.cce16@gmail.com
E. Schaefer, ScD, J&J Janssen     gene@biochemeng.com

CCE Steering Committee

Dana Andersen (Genentech, USA)
John Aunins (Janis Biologics, USA)
Mike Betenbaugh (Johns Hopkins University, USA)
Barry Buckland (BiologicB LLC., USA)
Jeff Chalmers (Ohio State University, USA)
Matt Croughan (Matt Croughan, Ph.D. Consulting, USA)
Peter Gray (University of Queensland, Australia)
Sarah Harcum (Clemson University, USA)
Wei-Shou Hu (University of Minnesota, USA)
Amine Kamen (McGill University, Canada)
Robert Kiss (Sutro Biopharma , USA)
Konstantin Konstantinov (Codiak  Biosciences, USA)
Lynne Krummen (Genentech, USA)
Kelvin Lee (University of Delaware, USA)
Mark Leonard (Pfizer, USA)
William Miller (Northwestern University, USA)
Jamie Piret (University of British Columbia, Canada)
Octavio Ramirez (UNAM, Mexico)
Weichang Zhou (WuXi Biologics, China)

CCE XVI Organizing Committee

Karin Anderson, Pfizer, USA
Bill Bentley, University of Maryland, College Park
Christina Chan, Michigan State University
Veronique Chotteau, KTH – The Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm
Colin Clarke, NIBRT
Chris Frye, Eli Lilly
Greg Hiller, Pfizer, USA
Wei-Shou Hu, University of Minnesota
Rashmi Kshirsagar, Biogen
Cleo Kontoravdi, Imperial College, London
Amanda Lewis, Bristol Myers Squibb
Martin Gawlitzek, Genentech
Arthi Narayanan, Genentech
Terry Papoutsakis, University of Delaware
Pranhitha Reddy, Gene to BLA
Greg Russotti, Celgene
Parviz Shamlou, Keck Graduate Institute
Shailendra Singh, Merck
Seonkyu Yoon, University of Massachusetts, Lowell
Marcella Yu, Boehringer Ingelheim
Weichang  Zhou, WuXi Biologics

Abstract Submission

Detailed session descriptions are available in the Preliminary Program below.  Please use these descriptions to pre-select up to three sessions where you believe your work fits best.

Abstracts (one page maximum) that include specific results and conclusions to allow a scientific assessment of the proposed oral presentation are invited.  Please prepared your abstract according to this template: docx or doc.

Abstracts must be submitted electronically using the template provided at: THIS LINK.

Oral abstract submission deadline:                October 14, 2017  
Poster abstract submission deadline:             October 21, 2017

Abstracts of all presentations will be made available to conference participants prior to the start of the conference.

Note:  Only a limited number of oral presentation slots are available and thus all submissions for oral sessions will be considered for both oral and poster presentation.

Awards will be presented to the top three non-student posters as well as the top three student posters.

Major Sponsors

Please click on the logo to visit the website.

18AC Amgen logo

18AC Shire Logo_Blue

Sponsorship Opportunities

Please click HERE to view the opportunities to be a conference sponsor.

Cell Culture Award

The Cell Culture Engineering (CCE) Award is intended to recognize an outstanding contributor to the field of Cell Culture Technology & Engineering.  This biennial award is open to all researchers in the cell culture field.

At  each conference, an award of cash and a commemorative plaque is presented to the recipient.

The winner of the Cell Culture Engineering Award for 2018 will be announced in March 2018.

Recipients of the Award:

 2002 – Wei-Shou Hu
2004 – Terry Papoutsakis
2006 – 
Robert Arathoon
2008 – 
Martin Fussenegger
2010 – 
Michael Betenbaugh
2012 – James Piret
2014 – Jeffrey Chalmers
2016 – Konstantin Konstantinov

Guidelines for Nominations

Martin Sinacore Award

Engineering Conferences International and Biogen are pleased to announce that nominations for the Martin Sinacore Outstanding Young Investigator Award are now open.  The award recipient will be a promising young scientist whose work shows exceptional promise in the field of Bioprocessing.  The award encompasses a financial award to cover conference registration fees for the 2018 Cell Culture Engineering Conference and the opportunity to present their research at the conference.

Marty’s career in the biotechnology industry spanned over 25 years and included time at Karyon Technology, Genetics Institute, Wyeth BioPharma and Biogen Idec.   Over the years, Marty established himself as a thought leader in the industry and a champion of constantly innovating and adopting new technologies to facilitate the delivery of life changing medicines to patients.   Marty’s influence can also be seen in the numerous junior scientists who have trained and grown under his guidance.

This award was first presented at the Cell Culture Engineering Conference at Quebec City in May 2014.

Eligibility:  Any graduate student or post-doc is eligible as is any researcher with less than 5 years of industrial or academic experience.  Individuals who meet these criteria are invited to submit an abstract to be considered for presentation at the 2018 Cell Culture Engineering Conference, curriculum vitae and two supporting letters of recommendation.

Submission of Nominations: Nominations will be accepted from September 1, 2017 through January 15, 2018.  The abstract should be submitted through the normal ECI procedure but a copy of it should accompany the curriculum vita and two letters of recommendation.  Please email to:

barbara@engconfintl.org – subject line should read: Martin Sinacore Award Nomination for (name of nominee)

Preliminary Program

Oral Session Program (Draft)

Towards other cell lines and systems – opportunities and challenges beyond CHO cells

During the last two decades, we have seen significant investment and fantastic achievements in productivity and understanding of CHO cell culture processes and the generalization of CHO cell culture technology platforms.  The same investment has not been made in alternative cell lines or systems which has resulted in CHO cells as the workhorses of the biopharmaceutical industry.  However, these cells have limitations and the CHO platform processes and technology can fall short in supporting commercially viable manufacturing of some difficult-to-produce proteins or new modalities. These are now the future molecules in the pipeline challenging the CHO capacity. This session will address which challenges the field is facing today in this domain, which alternative mammalian systems are envisioned instead of CHO cells to address these challenges and which solutions they can bring. The establishment of new systems requires pioneer effort, which can be overwhelming. What payoffs can be generated?

Veronique Chotteau, KTH, The Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm
Rashmi Kshirsagar, Biogen

Computational strategies to enhance bioprocess performance: From systems biology to predictive process modeling

Multidisciplinary collaborations between experimental and computational research groups have enhanced our understanding of bioprocesses and ultimately increased the efficiency of manufacturing practices in our industry. Abstracts for this session are invited in the areas including, but not limited to:

  • Mathematical modelling of bioprocesses upstream, cell culture, downstream and product quality.
  • Understanding cell physiology and protein expression using ‘omics technologies and bioinformatics, integrative data analyses of high throughput, high content cellular information, genome scale modelling and systems biology.
  • Advances in DoE approaches and its application to process optimization and understanding.
  • Application of multivariate statistics and machine learning for predictive modelling, monitoring and process control.
  • Utilization of “big data” and advanced data analysis technologies for biopharmaceutical production.

Colin Clarke, NIBRT
Amanda Lewis, Bristol-Myers Squibb
Averina Nicolae, Insilico Biotechnology

Advances in cell culture control of product quality attributes

Recombinant protein therapeutics manufactured in cell culture are characterized by their high complexity due to the enormous number of possible combinations of different chemical modifications such as glycosylation, deamidation, oxidation, glycation, etc. Control of these product quality attributes through increased process understanding and optimization has been a focus in biotherapeutic development and manufacturing in recent years. This session intends to cover state-of-the-art technologies and practices aimed at controlling product quality attributes, including cell line engineering, bioprocess optimization, the use of advanced modeling tools and OMICS applications, and high-throughput screening towards prediction and control of product quality attributes.

Martin Gawlitzek, Genentech
Seongkyu Yoon, University of Massachusetts, Lowell

Advanced cell culture processes with an emphasis on new analytical and computational technologies

This session will focus on new analytical and computational technologies that can deliver advanced cell culture processes. Ensuring process robustness at manufacturing scale is an important industrial constraint that is impacted by advances in three areas. The first is the development of predictive scale-down models that can aid rapid prototyping, process characterization, validation and optimizing process scale-up.  Another important requirement is new process analytical technologies (PAT) for online and in-line measurement of key performance indicators and critical quality attributes. These offer the opportunity for rapid process optimisation at small scale but can also provide feedback measurement to better inform process control strategies. A third enabling factor for process robustness is computational, statistical or mechanistic tools that underpin (a) data analysis and interpretation, (b) dynamic optimisation and (c) advanced process control efforts. We invite papers and case studies showcasing emerging technologies in these areas.

Arthi Narayanan, Genentech
Cleo Kontoravdi, Imperial College

Regulatory Strategies and Concerns in Current and Emerging Therapeutic Modalities

As the technically complex biotechnology field continues to rapidly evolve so must the strategies used to deliver the innovation emerging from these advances.  Specifically, process development approaches to meet regulatory expectations must adapt to not only the changing regulatory environment but also to the increasing breadth of the therapeutic modalities being take into clinical evaluation.  In addition, as biosimilar products begin to emerge, new considerations for their development have arisen.  In this session, different perspectives and strategies will be presented to highlight innovative approaches to meet regulatory requirements for developing and commercializing bio-therapeutics. Case studies will be presented to illustrate the use of new process and analytical technologies to address regulatory challenges of developing novel biotherapeutics, biosimilars and accelerating timelines for delivery of these products to patients.

Chris Frye, Eli Lilly
Pranhitha Reddy, Gene to BLA
Bill Bentley, University of Maryland

Pushing the Limits on Process Intensification: 10 grams/Liter and Beyond

Are you creating headaches for the downstream group?  Pushing productivity to such a level that they need to radically rethink their previous paradigms?  This session will welcome any method you’ve used to push productivity to the next level including work ranging from classical approaches such as intensified fed-batch or perfusion, or any creative modalities to push beyond the productivity limits of 10 g/L or 1 g/L/d.  Also desirable, any related work to overcome existing challenges for perfusion/continuous processes such as novel approaches for cell retention, medium volume reduction, overcoming mass transfer challenges at large scale, or development of small scale models applicable to these intensified processes.  Finally, any work showcasing the implementation of a highly intensive process for a clinical program would be of great interest for this session.

Greg Hiller, Pfizer
Marcella Yu, Boehringer Ingelheim

Innovation in Cell and Gene Therapies

Cell and gene therapies have been pursued for over 50 years now for treating difficult disease phenotypes spanning genetic diseases, cancer, autoimmune as well as iatrogenic diseases. While unequivocal successes have been few and far between, recent advances in biological, biomedical and bioengineering sciences have led to new optimism that such therapies will reach the market as approved therapeutic interventions and a basis for industrial engagement. In this session, we are looking for presentations that pursue new concepts or important novelties in cell and gene therapies, including novel bioprocessing concepts or successes. They could include presentations that pursue therapies based on T cells (such as CAR-T and TIL-cell based therapies), delivery vectors including extracellular vesicles (e.g. exosomes), various stem cells, but also differentiated cells that can be used in Transfusion Medicine or other applications.

Greg Russotti, Celgene
Terry Papoutsakis, University of Delaware

Impact of novel gene editing approaches to engineering and developing cell lines

Recent advances in the development and application of gene editing technologies have accelerated and enabled researchers to dissect the function of specific genes and regulatory elements. Additionally, it has enabled researchers to better understand, design, and control cell signaling and metabolic systems and processes that facilitate development of cell lines with predictable phenotypic performance, product quality attributes and/or productivity for generating biological pharmaceuticals. This also has enhanced our ability to elucidate the mechanisms of human development and disease, to develop novel and effective therapeutic molecules, and innovative approaches to engineer cell-based therapies. We invite abstracts that have utilized gene editing technologies in the rational design of cells with emphasis on advancing understanding of cellular function and improving cell line development outcomes to generate future biotherapeutics including cell-based therapies. Gene editing methods considered include but are not limited to CRISPR, Zn finger nucleases, or TALENs.

Christina Chan, Michigan State University
Karin Anderson, Pfizer

Process Scale Up/Down, Characterization and Control Strategy Definition

During biopharmaceutical process development and commercialization, some of the key activities and deliverables are successful process scale up, characterization and control strategy definition. As per regulatory guidance, the commercial manufacturing process is required to be well characterized and in control, to assure process performance and product quality. Successful scale up and scale down models can be used for definition of design space, identification of critical and non-critical process parameters, process optimization, process characterization, continuous process improvement, process validation and troubleshooting during manufacturing.

This session invites oral and poster presentations focusing on recent developments on process scale up (i.e. computational fluid dynamics and mechanistic models), scale down model verification (i.e. mathematical approaches and High throughput instruments), process characterization (i.e. process simulations and DOE models) and control strategy definition/implementation (i.e. analytical testing controls and process controls including real time monitoring and MVDA/PAT tools) for protein therapeutics and vaccines. Submissions that provide science and engineering based demonstration of successful scale up, scale down model verification, exemplify establishing and implementing a control strategy during a product lifecycle including regulatory submissions and post-licensure manufacturing change are particularly encouraged.

Shailendra Singh, Merck
Parviz Shamlou, Keck Graduate Institute

30 Years of Cell Culture Engineering – A Plenary Session

Three decades ago the approval of the first mammalian cell culture based therapeutics by FDA marked the beginning of a new era in biotechnology. 1988 also marked the beginning of this conference series “Cell Culture Engineering” that led a global fertilization of ideas, theories, practices for the academic, industrial and regulatory communities then, and continue to serve as an idea factory today.  This session of the 16th conference will be a celebration of this important milestone, highlighting the key accomplishments of the professional community of cell culture bioprocessing and marking its contributions to the transformation of a nascent field to flourishing biomanufacturing technology. To exemplify the critical role of open forums of this conference series in serving our community, this session will end with a panel discussion on the renovations and innovations that will continue to make this profession vibrant and strong.

Weichang Zhou, WuXi Biologics
Wei-Shou Hu, University of Minnesota

Conference Venue

Saddlebrook, the legendary resort inTampa Bay, Florida,

has made a name for itself as a superb meeting location and one of the preeminent training facilities for athletes.  The resort is located on 480 acres of rolling terrain surrounded by lagoons and cypress trees.  Saddlebrook was purposely planned as a car-free “walking village” ensuring guests can easily walk throughout the entire resort.  The resort’s 540 suites showcase an inviting rich tropical design and are clustered around nine serene courtyards complete with gardens, stone benches, stone paver walkways, and native lush Florida landscaping.

The hotel rooms offer 400 square feet of contemporary luxury with either a private balcony or patio.  Each room has a generously-sized desk with two chairs, wireless internet access and dual-line speaker phones.  In addition there is a 42” flat-screen television, Keurig coffee-maker, an iHome Bluetooth Wireless FM clock radio with USB charging, iron/ironing board, in-room safe and a hair dryer.

The meeting facilities at Saddlebrook are unrivaled.

There are two Arnold Palmer signature golf courses and a championship tennis complex that features 45 courts including four Grand Slam surfaces.  The Sports Village features two adjacent fitness centers, one sand and two grass volleyball courts, a regulation-size basketball court, and three swimming pools including the Superpool, a half-million gallon free-form pool.  In addition, Saddlebrook features a luxurious European-style spa that features a full menu of body treatments.

Saddlebrook is conveniently located one mile east of I-75 at exit 279, which is 30 minutes north of Tampa International Airport.

General Information about ECI

Engineering Conferences International (ECI) is a global engineering conferences program, originally established in 1962, that provides opportunities for the exploration of problems and issues of concern to engineers and scientists from many disciplines.

The format of the weeklong research conference provides morning and late afternoon or evening sessions in which major presentations are made. Available time is included during the afternoons for ad hoc meetings, informal discussions, and/or recreation. This format is designed to enhance rapport among participants and promote dialogue on the development of the meeting. We believe that the conferences have been instrumental in generating ideas and disseminating information to a greater extent than is possible through more conventional forums.

All participants are expected both to attend the entire conference and to contribute actively to the discussions. The recording of lectures and presentations is forbidden. As ECI conferences take place in an informal atmosphere, casual clothing is the usual attire.

Engineering Conferences International
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