Robust Superstructure Optimisation of a Bioreactor that Produces Red Blood Cells
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Recent work developed a novel, biomimetic, cost effective 3D hollow fibre bioreactor for growing healthy red blood cells ex vivo (Panoskaltsis et al., 2012). This promising bioreactor recapitulates the architectural and functional properties of erythrocyte formation and thereby reduces the need for expensive growth factors by more than an order of magnitude. The optimal bioreactor configuration has not been defined; design choices include: number of bioreactors run in parallel, number of hollow fibres in each reactor, size and aspect ratio of each bioreactor. Individual experiments on the bioreactor are cost- and labour-intensive, so we propose global, robust, superstructure optimisation for designing and operating the bioreactor. Beyond this individual bioreactor, robust superstructure design has the potential to more generally enable bioprocess optimisation. 2014 Elsevier B.V.