Cultivated meat has the potential to revolutionise the food industry. It can offer a sustainable way to produce meat that has the taste and texture of its traditional counterpart without the need to raise animals.

Cultivated meat is produced in bioreactors. In theory, cultivated meat production should be no different whether it is produced in a 500 mL, 50 L, or 2,000 L bioreactor. However, in practice, what works on a small laboratory scale doesn’t translate well into larger scale general production. While a lot of research has focused on the early stages of development – such as producing relevant cell lines and media – the interest is now turning to producing these cells on a large scale.

To tackle this challenge, Roslin Technologies has partnered with Dr Leo Rios-Solos, Lecturer in the University of Edinburgh’s School of Engineering. Combining Roslin Tech’s induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cell lines and Dr Rios-Solos’ focus on bioprocess engineering will allow us to find new ways to sustainably scale up production of cultivated meat. The project is supported by a grant from the Industrial Biotechnology Innovation Centre (IBioIC).

Scale up 5

During the project we will conduct thousands of tests in smaller bioreactors in a high-throughput environment. This will allow for minor changes to be made to the growth conditions, enabling parameters to be optimised much faster than through traditional routes.

The first area of focus for the project will be on media formulation and environmental conditions. We aim to find the optimum growth media that optimises cost and cellular growth. The ability to continually iterate minor changes in the cellular growth media allows for faster assessment and leads directly into our next research area. 

The second focus area is the optimised scale-up for cellular production using larger bioreactors. This will allow a systematic review of how the media and parameters at a small scale behave  in larger bioreactors and what is needed to ensure optimal growth. The results from this project will be important to help cultivated meat become viable faster. We are excited to start this project in partnership with Dr Rios-Solos. 

Roslin Tech scientist working on a 5L bioreactor
IBioIC Innovation Fund

This project is supported by the IBioIC Innovation Fund. IBioIC is a networking and support organisation that connects industry, academia and government to bring biotechnology processes and products to the global market. 

Visit their website to find out more: www.IBioIC.com