Advantages of Pichia pastoris

Why use Pichia pastoris as an expression host?

Pichia pastoris – a highly versatile cell factory combining advantages of established expression systems

Pichia pastoris is an established, regulatory body approved (FDA, EMA/EFSA), safe (GRAS), and highly competitive expression host for secreted recombinant proteins. Today, a large number of commercial recombinant protein products with various applications in different industries are produced with Pichia.

The yeast P. pastoris (also known as Komagataella phaffii) combines the advantages of prokaryotes, such as easy genetic manipulation and fast growth on inexpensive and chemically defined media, with eukaryotic features such as a subcellular protein processing machinery needed for post-translational modification. Compared to bacterial systems no cell lysis and tedious isolation from crude lysate, or refolding from inclusion bodies, is required to obtain the target protein. This minimizes the probability of unwanted enzymatic side activities. In contrast to laborious, expensive and time-consuming mammalian cell line generation, the generation of stable Pichia cell lines is straightforward. 

In comparison to other yeast systems, Pichia actively and effectively secretes recombinant target proteins into the culture supernatant with an exceptionally low amount of extracellular endogenous proteins. This furnishes a raw product with high purity, simplifying downstream processing requirements. Thus, Pichia not only enables cultivation processes with high volumetric productivity but also renders manufacturing of recombinant proteins even more economically viable.

Key Features

  • Eukaryotic protein expression system
  • Established, safe (GRAS), and clinically validated 
  • FDA and EMA approved host for manufacturing of biopharmaceuticals
  • FDA and EFSA approved host for manufacturing of proteins for food & feed applications
  • Intrinsically endotoxin and virus free
  • Simple, chemically defined, and animal-component-free media
  • Straightforward and quick construction of stable cell lines
  • Eukaryotic protein processing machinery facilitates protein folding and post-translational modifications
  • Active product secretion into culture supernatant
  • Simplified recovery and protein purification
  • Robust expression simplifying cultivation and scale-up
  • Excellent scalability – cultivation in bioreactors of up to 190,000 L demonstrated

Further Information

Technology Overview

Company information, white papers, case studies