The Beauty of Manufacturing

Biologics, like therapeutic antibodies, are a class of medicines produced in living cells. Manufacturing them is an incredibly complex process, and in addition to being technologically sophisticated, our manufacturing equipment is pretty cool to look at.

We make our medicines at four manufacturing facilities in the United States. In California, we have sites in South San Francisco, Vacaville and Oceanside; in Oregon, we have a site in Hillsboro.

Scientist running a fermenter in the Cell Culture Pilot Plant. In these pilot plants, thousands of scientific experiments are conducted to test all of our products and determine the best process to produce each biologic. South San Francisco, CA.
Media filtration system. These filters help sterilize the media (food) that cells use during the growth process. Vacaville, CA.
Processing valve array. This array is controlled by a software program and helps create a flow path for a specific process to manufacture a specific drug. Oceanside, CA.
A 12,000 liter bioreactor used for growing cell cultures. The cell culture usually grows for 12 to 14 days before harvest. South San Francisco, CA.
A clean-in-place (CIP) outlet panel. The cell culture ends its journey by leaving this panel to go to a harvest unit. It also has transfer lines and cleaning activities built in. South San Francisco, CA.
Technician setting up a 2,000 liter outlet panel for activities. South San Francisco, CA
A harvest filtration unit used to separate biologic medicine from cell debris. Each unit contains filters and the machines work in sequence in the separation process. This unit was built circa 1985 and was one of the first large scale manufacturing tangential flow filtration units in the world. South San Francisco, CA.
Antibody purification system. Antibodies are loaded onto “columns” and are purified as they pass through. Oceanside, CA.
A shipping container used to ship cryovessels that contain biologic medicines. The cryovessels are placed inside, packed with dry ice, and then closed and moved using a fork lift. Vacaville, CA.
A manufacturing operator oversees compounding operations. Compounding involves combining different ingredients of a medicine. Hillsboro, OR.
Utility infrastructure supporting production. This piping supports many of the activities in the biologics production process. Hillsboro, OR.
A manufacturing operator prepares buffer. Buffers are solutions that keep the relative acidity and alkalinity of biologic medicines at the correct levels. Hillsboro, OR.
Visual inspection station. At this station, visual inspections of the sample are conducted to monitor for defects. Hillsboro, OR.
High-speed automated packaging operation. Biologic medicines are packaged at these stations before delivery. Hillsboro, OR.