We’re more than excited to announce the launch of DSPX – GoSilico’s brand new downstream simulation suite! When designing DSPX, our vision was to polish ChromX into its best possible version and from there roll out simulation to the entire downstream process chain. This article tells you why and how.
A brief evolution of DSP simulation – from ChromX to DSPX
Our five years of experience in providing the biopharmaceutical industry with the chromatography simulation software ChromX have confirmed that the future of chromatography process development lies in digital solutions. World-leading biopharmaceutical companies, as well as disruptive biopharma start-ups, established technology suppliers and academic institutions utilize ChromX to digitalize their chromatographic downstream process development. But during these five years, we also got clear remarks that not only the future of chromatography lies in silico. After years as the market leader of chromatography simulation software, it was time to kick off the simulation of the entire downstream process (DSP) chain. As the pioneers of digital process development, we wanted to create something better, bigger and more comprehensive.
Our vision – Create the best possible simulation software for DSP
What would be the reasoning behind creating the most powerful and versatile tool the biopharmaceutical industry has ever seen – but no one can actually use it? Usability played THE key role when we started thinking about a future simulation software:
“With all the things we learned over the past years, we asked ourselves: How would we make ChromX if we started today and from scratch?”
Alexander Gutzler, Head of Product Development at GoSilico
We only had a vague idea what “the best possible simulation software” should look like and entered the discussion with industry. We quickly identified key criteria a future simulation software needed to fulfill to be considered the best:
You want to simulate your process. Most of you neither want to become an expert in applied mathematics, nor learn a completely new concept. A software workflow must therefore be intuitive from project definition to application, resembling standard lab workflows. The mathematical complexity must be hidden.
You don’t want to reinvent the wheel with every new simulation project in your team. You want to make use of what is already there for further simulation projects. You also want to share your knowledge within your team. This requires a database concept allowing you to save and share your in silico applications.
Every DSP is different and so are the requirements for its simulation. Also, every team and every company has its own demands. A one-size-fits-all solution will not do the job. A future software has to be designed in a modular way, such that all unit operations can easily be combined and plugged together.
“After many iterations of workflow optimization, user experience design and systems integration we finally ended up at DSPX.”
Alexander Gutzler, Head of Product Development at GoSilico
DSPX – your DownStream Process eXecuted in silico
The old ChromX – let’s just call it ChromX 1.0 – allowed you to digitalize your chromatography processes. With DSPX, GoSilico will enable you to execute your entire downstream process in silico, including further unit operations like filtration, conjugation or centrifugation.
DSPX so far includes one unit operation – the chromatography unit operation ChromX 2.0. DSPX is however designed as modular as can be and ready to include further steps: Both current and future unit operations can then easily be combined and plugged together, allowing you to design the simulation toolbox you need to simulate your specific downstream process application. But before we talk about what will be there in the future, let us take a brief look on what is there already.
DSPX comes with a streamlined and intuitive workflow and a novel component-centric structure, that sets the ground for re-utilizing and sharing project components in a database. Physical assets – such as columns, resins and molecules are thereby treated as individual components. All of these components are interchangeable, such that you can e.g. exchange column 1 with column 2 in a single simulation, plug in another buffer in the next run or even let DSPX optimize the general system set-up for you. Components can also be saved and shared in databases to provide colleagues with accessible process knowledge.
As of today, DSPX of course includes ChromX 2.0 – or precisely speaking, a more intuitive, more user friendly and even more accurate version of the old ChromX 1.0.
ChromX is now part of DSPX
As outlined before, we wanted to turn simulation into something really straightforward and intuitively understandable. To this, we introduced numerous enhancements in ChromX 2.0 – which is now available as the first unit operation within DSPX. ChromX 2.0 takes chromatography simulation to the next level, while you can still reutilize your old .csx files as input and benefit from all methods implemented in ChromX 1.0. So what has changed?
ChromX 2.0 simulates every component of the flow path of your chromatography system, from buffer lines through mixers, valves and sensors all the way to the sample outlet. Thereby, it is easily possible to predict the impact of changes of the system set-up on the result. These changes can be effortlessly simulated thanks to the component based set-up of process components such as buffers, sensors, tubings and column.
ChromX 2.0 further comes with handy auxiliaries such as default ions for a faster buffer set-up, a improved version of the buffer calculator and an automated method importer that allows you to rapidly extract data from UNICORN™ log files. DSPX thereby reads in native output files in .res or .zip format or data exported to Excel™ files and automatically synthesizes the experimental method.
ChromX 2.0 got equipped with a brand new adsorption isotherm to model ion exchange chromatography, based on a colloidal model description. In comparison to the standard SMA model, the new colloidal model achieves a completely new level of accuracy in the nonlinear range.
The future is digital – and DSPX will take you there
Imagine DSP development in five years. DSPX will comprise all relevant DSP unit operations like chromatography, UF/DF, conjugation, centrifugation and even viral safety. You will be simulating your entire downstream purification train at once and within seconds using DSPX. Let me give you some examples, how this digital future may look like…
Your boss asks you, how a change in your capture step will affect the output of the UF/DF step. You open DSPX, activate the various modules, connect your already calibrated process steps, change the desired parameter and there you go.
Your manager asks you about optimal purification conditions for a new process, that includes a Protein A chromatography, followed by a virus inactivation, then HIC polishing, dilution and finally an AEX polishing step. You simply ask your colleague – who developed the early phase process – for his DSPX model, perform an in silico optimization and/or a robustness study and hand over the final report to your manager few hours later.
The future of process development is digital – and DSPX will take you there.
Stop experimenting. Go Silico.