The advent of single-use bioprocess systems used for the delivery, storage or manufacture of biopharmaceuticals has introduced a new potential source for extractables and leachables (E&L) as these systems are comprised of polymeric materials. Several industry working groups, the FDA and USP have issued guidance and draft guidance on E&L analyses for a variety of applications. These documents typically indicate that mass spectrometry should be applied for discovery of E&L’s but provide little guidance as to the exact analytical methodology which should be used. We investigated the extractable profiles of a model single-use bioprocessing system consisting of a single-use bioprocess bag, connector tubing, and a hydrophilic disk filter including filter housing. Extractions were performed in water, ethanol, ethanol/water (50:50) and saline solutions. Extracts were analyzed using a stepwise analytical methodology including a variety of screening and mass spectrometry methods We then used this model system to demonstrate the use of recursive feature finding to automatically detect unique extractables followed by statistical filtering to focus on differentially present extractables which were above the analytical evaluation threshold (AET). We further show the significant affects of standard selection on the number of compounds determined to be above AET when reducing liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC/MS) data. A relative response factor database consisting of 14 structurally diverse commercially available polymer additives was used to arrive at an LC/MS identification threshold. The results of this study demonstrate that significant care should be taken when selecting standards for LC/MS analysis to avoid under reporting of extractables and leachables.
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Original Publication Date: 2/20/18