Perfusion is a type of cultivation method for cells. It is very similar in operation to a continuous stirred tank except that there is a device on the outflow that retains the cells and returns them back to the reactor. This type of cultivation can be used with mammalian cells to achieve high cell densities. Various principles can be used to retain the cells in the reactor such as sedimentation or filtration. However, for the latter special considerations need to be considered to prevent filter clogging. Perfusion is an extremely useful technique for the production of biopharmaceuticals because it allows the use of smaller reactors which can reduce the cost of goods for production.
Author: Brian Ladd (ESR5)