Sartorius Croatia BioPharma Meeting 2024.

Monday, 13.05.2024. - 14:00

The beginning of last month, April, marked the first in a series of planned events - the Sartorius Croatia Biopharma Meeting 2024., which brought together top experts and leaders in the spheres of biopharmaceutical and biotechnological industries in Zagreb and Ljubljana. The event was conceived as a true networking hub, knowledge exchange, and presentation of cutting-edge Sartorius portfolio technology. Our long-term partners have shaped the present biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries via their committed efforts, research, and advancement of knowledge. Below, we provide details of the event.

Innovations in (Bio)Pharmaceutics: Processes, technologies and current regulations

Current topics in the field of (Bio)Pharmaceutics took center stage at the Sartorius Croatia BioPharma Meeting 2024. This segment of the event was characterized by the exchange of knowledge and experiences among Sartorius experts, who shared fresh insights and perspectives on Bioanalytical solutions, Scale-up, process intensification, and EU GMP Annex 1 regulations with the attendees.

During the lectures by Sartorius experts, Ms. Renata Gronczewska, Sales Manager for Bioanalytics Devices, presented Bioanalytical solutions and technology under the theme "Sartorius Lab-Solutions for Cell Therapy".

Marcus Peiker, Platform Development Specialist at Sartorius Stedim Biotech, addressed the topic "Scale-up & Tech Transfer: From Laboratory to Commercial Manufacturing".

Gerben Zijlstra, Process Technology Manager for Cell Cultures, and Anja Mädler, Field Application Specialist for Bioreactor Technologies, introduced the intriguing topic of "Process Intensification".

Magnus Stering, Senior Product Manager for Filter Integrity Testing at Sartorius Stedim Biotech, presented a highly relevant subject focusing on compliance with the new European GMP Annex 1 regulation, titled "How far can you bring your filter validation and downstream sterility assurance routines?".

Demonstration of Sartorius devices and technology

The interesting topics of the first section were followed by a demonstration of devices from the Sartorius bioprocess division – which was also the highlight of the program, designed for networking and acquainting with Sartorius technologies and bioanalytical solutions for advanced analysis of cells and molecules.

In addition to the device demonstration with the application support of Sartorius specialists, an experiment was conducted on the Octet R8 system for label-free biomolecule characterization. This was a unique opportunity to explore functionality, the possibility of implementation in specific workflows and the integration of the new advanced research perspectives into the production process.

Furthermore, event guests had the opportunity to get familiarized themselves with the rest of the devices in the Sartorius portfolio.

Showcase: Renomated pharmaceutical companies of Croatia and Slovenia

In the final segment of the event, we hosted speakers from prominent and rapidly growing pharmaceutical companies in Croatia and Slovenia, who presented their companies' work and their contributions to the pharmaceutical industry.

Guest speakers from Selvita, JGL and Pfizer shared impressive examples of their company's work. This section provided an opportunity to familiarize the innovations and contributions of pharmaceutical giants to the pharmaceutical industry.

Selvita is one of the largest preclinical contract research organizations in Europe, presented by Ms. Adrijana Vinter, a member of the board of Selvita SA and Global Head of Drug Discovery. Selvita bridges the gap between early drug discovery and the clinical phase of drug development with a comprehensive range of services.

We welcomed guests from the JGL company. The company's work was presented by Zdravka Knežević, Head of Scientific Operations, Andrea Roje, Head of Pharmaceutical Development, and Leo Cuculić, Chief Process Development Technologist, on the topic "Scale-up & Technology transfer: JGL experience with sterile filtration technology". JGL is a rapidly growing Croatian pharmaceutical company focused on providing solutions for customers and patients in the fields of ophthalmology, nasal and dermal drug delivery and medical devices.

The rapidly growing, Pfizer, was presented by Goran Valinger, Director of Technical Support and Validation with over 20 years of experience in development, manufacturing, validation and regulatory aspects for Biopharmaceuticals. Pfizer, as a renowned global pharmaceutical company, is engaged in the production of active ingredients for biopharmaceutical drugs and medicinal products, excelling in end-to-end capabilities, transfer excellence, and execution discipline.

Representatives from companies JAFRAL, Bio-ReCell, Educell, and COBIK joined us in Slovenia.

Dr. Frenk Smrekar, the founder and director of JAFRAL, has dedicated his entire career to the field of GMP production of biomolecules. JAFRAL is a leading global Contract Development & Manufacturing Organization specializing in bacteriophage production.

The second guest speaker came from Bio-ReCell - a company representing the pinnacle of technology, with leading advancements towards improved isolation of specific cells from complex mixtures. Dr. Lenart Girandon is an expert in the field of cellular and gene therapy with over 15 years of experience. Renowned for his leadership, Lenart has led teams in the development of various therapies such as MSC and components of CAR-T technology. His roles, including Clinical Development Lead and Chief Executive Officer, have seen successful scale-up production in compliance with GMP guidelines and clinical application of manufactured cell therapies in various medical fields.

From the company COBIK, we hosted Dr. Sc. Gordana Uzelac, the Director of Process Development at COBIK. Gordana is a seasoned scientist who has been active in the field of biotechnology since 2017.

COBIK is a private biotechnological research and development organization that develops technologies and products in the fields of vaccines, gene therapy and antibacterial agents. The company collaborates with industry, academic and clinical partners to deliver products in the form of nucleic acids, viral vectors, proteins, nanoparticles, and virus-like particles. COBIK has founded several companies and raised investments to conduct proof-of-concept, preclinical, and clinical trials.

Dr. Miomir Knežević, the scientific director of the biotechnology businesses Educell and Biobank, joined us at the very end of the presentation on Slovenian (bio)pharmaceutical enterprises. Educell, today better known as GaiaCell, was founded in 1997. A biotechnology company that is part of the Vincula Biotech Group, a holding company consisting of hospitals and biotechnology companies. Educell provides patients with high-quality cell therapies covering various therapeutic areas (orthopedics, hemato-oncology, pulmonology, etc.).

Building the Future of Biotechnology Together

Sartorius Croatia BioPharma Meeting in 2024 exceeded our expectations. We worked together to raise awareness about the key guidelines for progress, innovation, and advanced technologies in the field of Biopharmaceuticals.

We are proud that this event has provided a great networking platform for a deep exchange of knowledge, experiences, and perspectives among experts. However, this is just the beginning - your assistance and active involvement are essential to realizing our common objectives and opening the door to an even more promising future for the biopharmaceutical industry.