Canadian Manufacturing

Merck cites EnWave’s REV technology as a manufacturing alternative in vial-based vaccines

Vaccine manufacturing can significantly improve with accelerated vacuum drying technology.

January 26, 2021  by CM Staff

Merck & Co is an American multinational pharmaceutical company.

VANCOUVER — EnWave Corporation announced on Jan. 26 that Merck & Co. Inc published a research paper citing EnWave’s freezeREV® process as a viable manufacturing alternative to vial-based lyophilization for vaccines and biologics. The research article entitled “Evaluation of Microwave Vacuum Drying as an Alternative to Freeze-Drying of Biologics and Vaccines: The Power of Simple Modeling to Identify a Mechanism for Faster Drying Times Achieved with Microwave” was published in the January 19, 2021 edition of PharmSciTech, the official journal of the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists.

Merck’s nine-month evaluation used a lab-scale freezeREV® unit manufactured by EnWave specifically for the dehydration of pharmaceutical products. The goal of the study was to determine the uniformity and repeatability of Microwave Vacuum Drying (MVD) when used to dry liquid vaccines in vials.

The authors of the research article note that both the global pandemic and the rapid spread of COVID-19 have emphasised the need for accelerated vaccine development and on-demand, flexible manufacturing options. The published evaluation results stated that “Microwave vacuum drying serves as a faster alternative to freeze drying of biologically active materials such as vaccines, proteins, and microorganism cultures”. Data from the study shows that EnWave’s freezeREV® process reduces drying cycle times by 80% to90% while maintaining product activity and stability when compared to lyophilization. Lyophilization drying times are seen as a significant bottleneck for vaccine manufacturing.

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