ISPE Glossary of Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology Terminology

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The axenic growth of microbial cells in stirred vessels called “fermenters”. The term is also frequently applied to mammalian cell culture when the cells are grown in suspension in stirred fermenters called “bioreactors”. The term “fermentation” originally referred to the metabolism of carbon compounds under anaerobic conditions. Today the term refers to all biotechnological production methods.

Publication Source: ISPE Baseline® Guide, Vol. 6: Biopharmaceutical Manufacturing Facilities

Publication Date: 2004


The process of growing microorganisms within an enclosed stirred tank (fermenter) under controlled conditions of aeration, agitation, temperature, and pH. The different types organisms used as a basis for fermentation are:

1. Bacteria (E. coli)

2. Yeasts

3. Molds

4. CHO (Chinese Hamster Ovary) cells

5. Kidney cells

6. Vaccines to viruses


The biochemical synthesis of organic compounds by microorganisms or cultivated cells.

Publication Source: American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), Bioprocessing Equipment (BPE) - 2009 Revision

Publication Date:

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