Biopharmaceuticals are complex molecules produced through living cells or organisms and are mainly therapeutic proteins to treat life threatening diseases. They represent a significant and growing portion of the pharmaceutical market, with a project global market size of over $400 billion by 2025.  Cell-based bio-production is the key technology underpinning this Industry. 

Currently however, the expression yields of these proteins are often low. Lower yields create significant manufacturing complexity and drive increased capital and manufacturing costs. This project will develop a novel platform based on innovative automated systems to elucidate the features of a robust cell expression system for difficult to express proteins, leading to higher yields and decreased production costs. This study will specifically focus on secretory pathway proteins, which allow a cell to produce and secrete mature proteins. The robust platform to be developed here is of great interest for the biopharmaceutical industry , where significant pressure exists to reduce production costs and meet the requirements of the available manufacturing footprint. The production of high-value recombinant proteins brings innovation and increases competitiveness of Queensland advanced manufacturing capabilities, boosting economic growth. Finally, enabling production of complex therapeutic proteins will be valuable to treating human diseases.

Workflow to develop good producer CHO cell lines

Project members

Project lead


Dr Veronica S. Martinez Salazar

Advance Queensland Industry Research Fellow
Marcellin Group


Professor Lars Nielsen

Senior Group Leader
Nielsen Group

Professor Esteban Marcellin Saldana

Group Leader
Marcellin Group