After finishing a technical degree in Biological Engineering, Apolline Helfer specialized in biotechnology and pharmaceutical bioproduction at the École Supérieure de Biotechnologie de Strasbourg offering a trinational curriculum in Strasbourg, Basel and Freiburg universities and conducting also a master in pharmaceutical biotechnology at Strasbourg University.
During her multidisciplinary training, she broadened her knowledge in several fields such as upstream and downstream areas in an international environment. Her master thesis at Ennolys in Soustons, France (Groupe Lesaffre) was focused on optimizing a 20L probiotic production process to improve both viable cell concentration and stability after freeze-drying and long-term storage.
She had the opportunity to build significant practical and technical experience in Manufacturing Sciences while working at Biogen in Solothurn as Postgraduate Intern. She operated benchtop bioreactors to develop new strategies to increase yield product on established mammalian cell fed-batch production process using a scale-down model. Through this experience, she could deepen her understanding of cell culture parameters and their impact on product quality attributes. She worked in close collaboration with several process experts to evaluate the feasibility of implementing new strategies from bench-scale to large-scale on the manufacturing floor.
She joined the Bioprocess Technology Laboratory at FHNW as Scientific Assistant to bring her expertise in cell culture and upstream processes. Her work is focused on production and purification of plasmids, proteins and adeno associate viruses (AAV).