PhyNexus Enables Automated Workflow Integration

The biopharma industry is moving toward more centralized, integrated workflows of upstream and downstream processing steps, and away from decentralized specialization of each step. The shift is being driven by the twin goals of delivering greater researcher control over the R&D process, and speeding the process of R&D itself. For one department to take control of multiple processes and drive the pace of discovery and development, automation of integrated workflows is mandatory.

PhyNexus PhyTip Columns enable research labs to set up automated, integrated workflows of multiple sample preparation and processing steps without manual intervention. PhyTip Columns make integrated workflows possible because they are capable of being packed with many different processing chemistries always in a standard 96-well format designed for automated liquid handling instruments and deliver superior results for downstream applications.

What is Automated Workflow Integration

Automated workflow integration is simply linking two or more sample preparation and/or processing steps in succession, such that those steps can be done without manual intervention.

  • A simple example might mean using one automated liquid handling instrument to first purify a protein using PhyTip Columns in 96-well format, transfer the purified protein to a 96-well plate, and transfer that plate to a mass spectrometer for analysis.

For more complex solutions, a lab may add third party instruments such as plate hotels, sequencers, UV spectrometers and other instruments to integrate a high throughput, highly reliable automated workflow.

  • A complex example might involve four stations linked together where the first station (1) houses a plate hotel with plasmid cultures and other items which are fed to the next station (2) where resuspension, lysis, and precipitation of plasmid DNA is performed in 96-well format (3) the next station would perform plasmid purification on PhyTip Columns in 96-well format (perhaps a plate reader for UV absorption measurements could be added as well) and (4) the next station would aliquot the plasmids into an appropriate media for transient transfection, which can be transferred to a plate hotel for incubation, and subsequently removed and purified by PhyTip Columns in 96-well format.

PhyTip Columns Flexibility and Functionality Make It Possible

PhyTip Columns make automated workflow integration possible because the 96-well format may be used throughout – no vacuums, no centrifuges. PhyTip columns can process and manipulate very small sample volumes that are contained in 96-well plates. Using the same 96-well format, samples can be grown, manipulated and assayed. And virtually all third-party instruments have designs to accommodate the 96-well format.

Equally important, PhyTip Columns work with an array of different chemistries, allowing varied processes to be linked together in an integrated workflow. Compatible, automatable chemistries include plasmid purification, antibody purification, tagged recombinant protein purification, ion exchange, normal phase and reverse phase chromatography, gel filtration for desalting and buffer exchange, mass spectrometry sample prep, on-column reactors for immunoprecipitation and co-immunoprecipitation, and more. And PhyNexus can deliver PhyTip Columns packed with custom resins specified by the customer. Hundreds of chemistries allow for potentially thousands of integrated workflows.

Finally, automation is only as good as the samples produced. The Tip Concentrating Effect of PhyTip Columns has the unique benefit of delivering very high quality, highly concentrated samples from very low sample volumes. PhyTip Columns are uniquely designed to take advantage of the benefits of microscale automation (smaller sample requirements, higher throughputs, easier labeling, etc.) while still delivering sufficient sample quantity and quality for downstream applications.