Impact of virus preparation quality on parvovirus filter performance

Biotechnol Bioeng. 2013 Jan;110(1):229-39. doi: 10.1002/bit.24600. Epub 2012 Aug 6.


Virus-removal filtration technology is commonly used in the manufacturing process for biologics to remove potential viral contaminants. Virus-removal filters designed for retaining parvovirus, one of the smallest mammalian viruses, are considered an industry standard as they can effectively remove broad ranges of viruses. It has long been observed that the performance of virus filters can be influenced by virus preparations used in the laboratory scale studies (PDA, 2010). However, it remains unclear exactly what quality attributes of virus preparations are critical or indicative of virus filter performance as measured by effectiveness of virus removal and filter capacity consistency. In an attempt to better understand the relationship between virus preparation and virus filter performance, we have systematically prepared and analyzed different grades of parvovirus with different purity levels and compared their performance profiles on Viresolve® Pro parvovirus filters using four different molecules. Virus preparations used in the studies were characterized using various methods to measure DNA and protein content as well as the hydrodynamic diameter of virus particles. Our results indicate that the performance of Viresolve® Pro filters can be significantly impacted depending on the purity of the virus preparations used in the spike and recovery studies. More importantly, we have demonstrated that the purity of virus preparations is directly correlated to the measurable biochemical and biophysical properties of the virus preparations such as DNA and protein content and monodispersal status, thus making it possible to significantly improve the consistency and predictability of the virus filter performance during process step validations.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biotechnology / instrumentation*
  • Biotechnology / methods*
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Drug Contamination / prevention & control
  • Filtration / instrumentation*
  • Filtration / methods*
  • Light
  • Parvovirus, Porcine / chemistry
  • Parvovirus, Porcine / isolation & purification*
  • Scattering, Radiation
  • Swine
  • Virion / chemistry
  • Virion / isolation & purification*