Continuous-flow processing in the manufacturing of modern biotherapeutics represents a great potential and could significantly improve productivity and product quality as well as reduce operating costs. Microfluidic perfusion systems are not only capable for producing therapeutic proteins but also suitable for organ-on-a-chip based drug testing and toxicology studies. Integrating modular unit operations for protein purification in the microfluidic cell culture device can lead to point-of-care therapeutic protein production. The multi-organ microfluidic platforms that integrate several organ-on-a-chip microfluidic units will help in preclinical testing of drug substances and toxicological studies by producing highly reliable preclinical pharmacokinetic data. In this perspective, the current state of the art and future trends of continuous flow systems are summarized for biopharmaceutical production and organ-on-a-chip drug testing.
The utilization of continuous-flow biochemical reactors, including biocatalysis, biotransformation, and biochemical interaction based flow-analytical systems, and enzyme reactors are recently the focus of attention to produce fine biochemicals and also show great potential in bioanalytical applications. Continuous-flow biochemical processes implemented in microstructured reactors enable short development time to production scale utilizing enzymatic processes to efficiently fulfill the current needs of the fine biochemical and pharmaceutical industry. Immobilization of the enzymes is preferable because it usually enhances their stability, and in some instances, immobilized enzymes can even be reused multiple times. In this review on the continuous-flow biochemical reactors, first the enzyme immobilization strategies will be briefly discussed followed by summarizing the recent developments in the field of immobilized enzyme microflow reactors for biocatalysis, bioconversion and bioanalytical purposes.