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Once a protocol for coating beads is developed and put in place, it will need to be scaled up in order to meet demand. Scaling up a process, however, requires careful attention to ensure that the details of the protocol are replicated for larger volumes.

This post is about scaling up the protocols for coating magnetic beads. If you want detailed information about this topic, download our free ebook 
The Advanced Guide for the use of Magnetic Beads in Chemiluminescent Immunoassays:

Free PDF guide:  "The Advanced Guide for the use of Magnetic Bead in ChemiLuminiscent  ImmunoAssays (CLIA)" 

What do I have to take into consideration?

It is essential to ensure that the raw materials can retain their quality when utilized in higher quantities. Similarly, it is important to verify that any equipment utilized in the original protocol is transferable to the scaled-up version. There are some instances where this will not be the case, and adjustments will have to be made. In cases where centrifugation plays a part in the process, for example, this is typically an issue. Materials used for small volume processes such as centrifuge tubes, are not capable of accommodating the same centrifugation velocity for larger volumes. As such, alterations will have to be made to the protocol to ensure that the same conditions are being maintained.

streptavidin beads

The importance of maintaining conditions

For protocols that involve magnetic particle separation, it is essential that the same conditions are maintained for larger batch volumes or significant problems may arise. If the same system is not utilized for the larger volumes, or if care is not taken to ensure that the same conditions are maintained throughout, the force experienced by the beads will be altered, and issues including non-reversible bead agglutination may arise.

Scaling up a protocol is not always straightforward. Problems may be avoided, however, if proper measures are taken to ensure that the conditions of a protocol are maintained when moving from a smaller to a larger volume. It is important, therefore, that the research and development department that establishes the protocol and the manufacturing department charged with scaling up the protocol maintain good communication to avoid any complications during a scale up.

Don’t forget to check these posts from our blog in order to get a deeper insight into magnetic particles and immunoassays:

Bio Sergi Gassó

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Lluis M. Martínez | SEPMAG Chief Scientific Officer

Founder of SEPMAG, Lluis holds a PhD in Magnetic Materials by the UAB. He has conducted research at German and Spanish academic institutions. Having worked in companies in Ireland, USA and Spain, he has more than 20 years of experience applying magnetic materials and sensors to industrial products and processes. He has filed several international patents on the field and co-authored more than 20 scientific papers, most of them on the subject of magnetic particle movement.

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