Hi, my name is Mallory. I started working at Batavia Biosciences in 2013, directly after finishing my bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry. I was always interested in the medical side of Biochemistry, because I aspire to make a difference in human suffering from diseases. At Batavia, I found the unique combination of innovative biomedical research and application of the research in support of Global Health.
Within Batavia, I work in the downstream processing (DSP) department. DSP is an important phase in the production of biopharmaceuticals, such as vaccines. Many vaccines are made by first using cells to produce a virus in a bioreactor. This process results in a broth containing many different substances. These substances, like cell debris and feed medium, need to be removed before formulating the final product. After the product is fully purified, usually it will be concentrated and formulated to form the final drug product. As a senior technician DSP, I prepare experimental setups, write the needed documentation, perform experiments, and analyze results to transform the bioreactor harvest into a useable vaccine.
Only a few companies that develop biopharmaceuticals have the expertise and equipment to do their DSP development in-house. Therefore, many of these companies outsource their DSP development to CDMOs like Batavia. For a part of the projects, we also perform the developed DSP process in GMP to produce product which will then be used in clinical trials. This results in a lot of work variety for me and my colleagues. One day I am purifying a promising new gene therapy and the next day I am working on a novel breakthrough vaccine production platform, able to significantly reduce vaccine production costs.
Because me and my colleagues are all driven to make a difference in affordability and availability of important medicines, we also play an active role in many Global Health initiatives. It is very rewarding to be able to contribute to a safer world by doing your job. During technology transfers and training, technicians like myself, come into contact with our customers and partners. It is very interesting to hear their part of the story and collaborate towards a mutual purpose. Via team presentations and guest lectures, we learn more about the broader context and progress of projects.
Successfully finishing our projects means a next step in saving lives and reducing human suffering from diseases. Therefore, it can be challenging to prioritize. Luckily, I can always count on my team to help spread the workload. And by working together in a positive environment, we achieve great things.