Industrial Visit to Catalent Pharmaceuticals

Industrial Visit to Catalent Pharmaceuticals

On April 12th, 2019, PGSO e-board organized an industrial visit to Catalent Pharmaceuticals Company in Bloomington, Indiana. Catalent, Inc. is a Somerset, New Jersey company involved in technology and development for drugs, biologics and consumer health products. From early development to clinical supply and commercial manufacturing, the 30+ global site teams support through all phases of development, delivery and supply.

With the efforts of our Industrial Liaison, Zach Batts and Vice President, Arnold Eng, the cohort got an opportunity to get a detailed tour of the facility. Our host, Hannah Bowman - the scientist presented us about how the company functions, client interaction, the kind of projects the company handles, the innovation in drug delivery, company’s mission and vision, safety and sterilization, future strategy and competition. She was a perfect tour guide along with other representatives from the company to guide us through the manufacturing plant showing us upstream and downstream process, sterile technologies, syringe filling, vial filling, device assembly and packaging, research labs, various reactors and equipment.

Catalent’s process of production was extremely impressive. A typical scale-up process is conducted once a company contracts Catalent to produce a specific molecule or protein. Once a viable process is designed the product begins to be manufactured. Initially the molecule or protein will enter a batch reactor were an exponential growth stage occurs. During this stage the molecule which is implanted in a mouse ovarian cell will begin to multiply rapidly until the desired batch size is met. After the batch reaction is completed the protein or molecule needs to be extracted from the ovarian cell in which it is housed. To do, this Catalent utilizes various separation units ranging from exotic alpha lignin separating columns to biologically engineered viruses that target and extract portions of the cell, and much more. Lastly, the final product is ran through a purification step and quality control testing before it is packaged and sent to the customer.

Our cohort also got to meet two alumni of our PMP program Yash Shah and Amanda Kelley who helped us in connecting our technical background of graduate program with the application of it in real life job. We were also accompanied by Professor William Clark who networked with Catalent professionals to understand the needs of the industry and bridge it with our graduate program. After the tour, there was an hour-long panel discussion with 11 professionals from various departments clarifying our questions, giving us detailed insight about the company and advising us for our career path. The 4-hour tour was informative and wonderful learning experience for the cohort.

After the site visit, PGSO headed north to Indianapolis.  Along with Professor Clark, the cohort had dinner at Saffron, a traditional Moroccan restaurant. The food was excellent and the cohort had a great opportunity to network and reflect on the day at Catalent. After sight-seeing few places in Indianapolis, the cohort headed back to campus. Special thanks to our President, Nam Tran and Arnold for driving us to and from safely.

Overall, the day was a success. 25 students had the opportunity to explore and learn about the pharmaceutical industry. Also, it was great seeing PMP Alumni becoming leaders in their respective fields. It is a confirmation of the great program that Purdue Davidson School of Chemical Engineering has created. Thank you Catalent and Boiler Up!

PGSO Members with Purdue Alumni at Catalent

PGSO enjoying Moroccan food with Professor Clark
PGSO made friend with a little furry after dinner
PGSO exploring the Indy Canal
PGSO sightseeing in Massachusetts Avenue in Indy