Consolidated Provides MiniBulk Autoclave to World Leading Biotech Company

Arthur Trapotsis
Written by: Arthur Trapotsis

MS Biochemical Engineering, MBA, Consultant

Genzyme is a world leading biotech company that specializes in discovering and delivering transformative therapies for patients with rare and special unmet medical needs. Based in Cambridge, Mass., the biotech company underwent a major renovation at its Framingham facility in which one of the key components was the installation of a brand new autoclave.

After researching potential autoclave manufacturers, the team at Genzyme worked with consultants to identify potential autoclave manufacturers — one of which was Consolidated Sterilizer Systems. Following roughly a year of due diligence and research, Genzyme developed a budget with a guaranteed maximum price for the autoclave equipment. After getting the OK from decision makers, Genzyme hired A/Z Construction to serve as the general contractor for the project — dubbed 31 NYA Pilot Plant.

The Challenge

Genzyme’s facility renovation involved the installation of 50-liter and 500-liter single-use bioreactors, both of which are relatively large pieces of equipment that need to be routinely sterilized. The challenge for Genzyme was finding an autoclave manufacturer that offered a sterilizer big enough to hold the large bioreactors during the sterilization process, but wasn’t so big as to require “pit mounting.”

Consolidated’s competitors submitted a solution that involved a “pit mounted autoclave” — which is a requirement for bulk, walk-in sterilizers that allow for an operator to wheel a full cart into the autoclave chamber. But while this type of autoclave was large enough for a bioreactor to fit, it required an incredible amount of modification to the surrounding space to accommodate. This type of modification would prove costly.

The SolutionConsolidated Provides MiniBulk Autoclave to World Leading Biotech Company_1

Consolidated’s solution was to offer the LR-36D MiniBulk autoclave along with a custom loading cart. This model was large enough to hold Genzyme’s bioreactors but did not require pit-mounting, thus offering a far more cost effective solution. The LR-36D also included the following:

  • ADV-PRO controls
  • Custom shelving on the loading cart
  • Vacuum pump
  • Dual steam feed
  • WaterEco® Gravity Plus water saving system

The Installation

After Consolidated received the order and completed the manufacturing process, the autoclave was ready for delivery and installation. The installation of the autoclave presented its own challenges as the elevators were not big enough to bring the unit to its final resting place on the second floor of Genzyme’s facility. The parties involved got creative and decided to cut a hole into the side of the building. The MiniBulk autoclave was hoisted up the side of the building using a crane and lifted through the hole. Due to the weight of the autoclave, the floor path from the hole in the second story wall to the autoclave room was reinforced.

In addition to solving for the installation process, Consolidated worked with Genzyme to come up with a process on how to orientate the bioreactor into the autoclave chamber to ensure there would be no buildup of condensate during the sterilization process.


Consolidated Provides MiniBulk Autoclave to World Leading Biotech Company_2The successful partnership between Genzyme and Consolidated was made possible through the sales efforts of Dan Ghidoni of Northeast Scientific Associates, a third-party consultative sales representative for Consolidated. Ghidoni worked not only with Genzyme’s consultants, but also with representatives of A/Z Construction to ensure Genzyme was receiving the best quality autoclave on behalf of Consolidated.

“This was a very unique and tough install,” said Ghidoni.

Stacy Chen, a lab assistant with Genzyme’s Process Development Department, said the autoclave is an integral part of the day to day operation at Genzyme. The autoclave supplied by Consolidated ended up being the perfect fit, she said.

“We needed a big autoclave that handles big equipment and this one is doing the job very well,” said Chen. “It handles everything from small to big equipment, such as tubing, bottles and bioreactors.”

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