Biopharmaceutical Storage & Handling: pH & Acidity

Image of pH Testing Kit

Introduction pH is a measure of Hydrogen ion concentration and can also be described as ‘A measure of how acidic a solution is‘. Low pH (0-3) environments are most acidic while high pH (11-14) environments are least acidic and described as alkaline or basic. As mentioned previously, protein structure is dependent on a combination of chemical bonds and electrostatic (Stationary … Read More

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What is the ‘Cold Chain’?

The pervasiveness of biopharmaceuticals (biologics) in the 21st century pharmaceutical landscape, means that the presence of ‘heat-labile’ pharmaceuticals even in the ‘corner-store’ pharmacy is almost guaranteed. It is therefore essential that every pharmacist and all dispensary staff have some basic knowledge on how to store, handle and transport Cold Chain Products (CCPs).  Cold Chain Products (CCPs) are those requiring storage under refrigerated conditions of 2-8°C. … Read More

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What is a Biopharmaceutical? (Part II): Biopharmaceutical Characteristics

Image of Monoclonal Antibody

The following list while not comprehensive, provides some key characteristics of biopharmaceuticals / biologics: 1. They are produced within ‘Living Cells’. 2. They are proteins in most cases although more recent developments have seen nucleic acids entering the fray as therapeutic agents. 3. They have very large molecular weights and by extension tend to be very large molecules. (This is … Read More

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What is a Biopharmaceutical? (Part I): The Role of Genetic Engineering

Genetic Engineering

‘ Biopharmaceuticals‘ or Biologics‘ as they are also known are medicines derived from biological sources as suggested by their ‘bio-‘ prefix. Technically this would include, medicines derived by extraction of natural products from plants, animals or even fungi. Penicillins would be one such noted example. Based on this broad definition, vaccines and blood products among others would also be considered … Read More

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