Ceramic AM research project aims to make production of complex vaccines faster and cheaper

May 28, 2020

The Nessie project has used Lithoz’s ultra-high-resolution ceramic AM to produce novel chromatographic columns, a first of its kind hybrid structured absorbent with tailored shapes and controlled porosity (Courtesy Lithoz GmbH)

Lithoz GmbH, Vienna, Austria, has initiated a research project called Nessie, along with SINTEF, a research organisation located in Oslo, Norway, and IBET, a biopharmaceutical research centre based in Lisbon, Portugal, to produce complex vaccines in large quantities at low cost by using ceramic Additive Manufacturing. Along with Lithoz, Sintef, and iBET, GenIbet and Cerpotech have also joined the project bringing with them their expertise on the manufacturing of biopharmaceuticals and innovative materials, respectively. 

The project partners explain that the COVID-19 pandemic highlights the importance and the great need of vaccines that can effectively combat such diseases. However, the development of an effective vaccine involves much effort and the highest safety standards, which means production is often slow and very expensive. Nessie addresses these weaknesses specifically and aims to increase the efficiency with which vaccines are produced and is already contributing to the development of novel methods to purify viruses, such as adenovirus.

According to the project partners, adenoviruses are excellent vectors for delivering genes or vaccine antigens to humans, with many of the successful vaccines actually using viruses to deliver the necessary elements to become immune. However, such viruses are expensive to produce and like many substances used for humans, there is extra caution with the purity and purification of these viruses. By using ultra-high resolution ceramic Additive Manufacturing and applying a novel design for the production of chromatographic columns (the most advanced purification technology), the Nessie project will improve separation and reduce production costs. Nessie reportedly succeeded in the production of the first

chromatographic supports and will soon test them for adenovirus purification.

The Nessie research project is believed to show that revolutionary technologies such as AM can improve healthcare systems in a sustainable way. The novel process makes vaccines available to countries that previously could not afford the high cost of essential vaccines such as measles or rubella. The research project partners state that with the current closure and shortage of medical supplies, Additive Manufacturing has proven that local manufacturing can be more than just making prototypes; AM is helping to quickly produce components regardless of location and without being dependent on complex supply chains.




In the latest issue of PIM International…

Download PDF

Extensive MIM, CIM industry and sinter-based AM industry news, plus the following exclusive deep-dive articles and reports:

  • Calling all product designers: Discover what Metal Injection Moulding could do for you through these award-winning parts
  • Binder Jetting of a dual-phase steel: Process insight and optimisation using the Master Sintering Curve
  • The rise of filament-based metal AM: New materials and machines present opportunities for MIM producers
  • Sinter-based Additive Manufacturing at the 20th Plansee Seminar on Refractory Metals and Hard Materials
  • Ceramitec 2022: Opportunities abound for producers of technical ceramics by CIM and AM

The latest news from the MIM, CIM and sinter-based AM industries

Don't miss any new issue of PIM International, and stay up to date with the latest industry news. Sign up to our fortnightly newsletter.

Sign up

News from the industry…

    Discover our magazine archive…

    The free-to-access PIM International magazine archive offers unparalleled insight into the world of MIM, CIM and sinter-based AM from a commercial and technological perspective through:

    • Reports on visits to leading part manufacturers and industry suppliers
    • Articles on technology and application trends
    • Information on materials developments
    • Reviews of key technical presentations from the international conference circuit
    • International industry news

    All past issues are available to download as free PDFs or view in your browser.


    Browse the archive


    Looking for suppliers of materials, production equipment and finished MIM, CIM or sinter-based AM parts?

    Discover suppliers of these and more in our advertisers’ index and buyer’s guide, available in the back of PIM International.

    • Metal powders
    • MIM, CIM & AM parts producers
    • Binders & feedstocks
    • Feedstock mixers
    • Furnaces & furnace supplies
    • Atmospheres & gas generation
    • HIP systems & services
    • Injection moulding machines
    • AM technology
    • Debinding systems
    Download PDF
    Share via
    Copy link
    Powered by Social Snap