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Best-in-class pump, flow control and flow-measurement solutions that safely transfer and precisely meter the most delicate of biologics, medicines and therapeutics, all while increasing yield, throughput and speed to market.

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Ideal solutions for critical applications

Quattroflow® develops and manufactures quaternary (four-piston) diaphragm pumps specifically designed for critical applications in the biopharma industry.

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Choosing the correct pump for the job

What is Bioprocessing?

Bioprocessing is an operation that uses biological sources, such as living cells or enzymes, to produce a variety of biopharmaceuticals, vaccines and therapeutic products, among others. Bioprocessing harnesses the unique capabilities of biological systems to produce high-value products that may be difficult or impossible to produce using traditional chemical-synthesis methods. 

It involves a combination of upstream and downstream processing steps, which can vary depending on the product being created, the type of biological sources being used, and the desired quality and quantity of the final product.

bioprocessing content

Upstream Processing

This process includes cultivating living cells, such as bacteria or mammalian cells, in a bioreactor under controlled conditions such as temperature, pH, oxygen supply and other factors. The cells are grown and allowed to produce the desired protein or other biological material. Upstream processing produces a high-quality biological material that can be used in downstream processing, which is used to produce a safe, pure and effective biopharmaceutical product.

Downstream Processing

Downstream processing consists of several stages of purification and concentration of biological materials, including clarification, filtration, chromatography and formulation. These processes isolate and remove impurities from the product, concentrate the active ingredient, and prepare the product for final formulation and packaging. Common biopharmaceutical products that are produced through downstream processing include: 

  • Monoclonal antibodies (mAbs): Used to treat a wide range of ailments, including cancer, autoimmune disorders and infectious diseases 
  • Recombinant proteins: Used in therapeutics, vaccines or enzymes 
  • Vaccines: Used to prevent infectious diseases by stimulating the immune system to produce a protective response 

The role of pumps in bioprocessing

Since most bioprocessing steps involve handling aqueous liquids, bioprocessing pumps play a critical role in generating the pressure needed to forcefully transfer the biological materials and finished products through filters and membranes or to mix the biological product with buffers and other components accurately. 

Typical applications in upstream and downstream processing that require the use of bioprocessing pumps include:

Q-Control Pumps


  • Addition of nutrients, buffer solutions or other additives to the cell culture or fermentation media to optimize cell growth in bioreactors
  • Mixing of liquid components during preparation and filtration of sterile media
  • Transfer of product between bioreactors


  • Chromatography: Bioprocessing pumps are used to control the flow rate of the fluid as it moves through the chromatography column. They also help maintain consistent pressure throughout the column, improving the resolution and separation of the target molecule from other components in the mixture. In gradient systems, two or more pumps run in parallel, mixing two or more buffers with different salt concentrations to change the fluid’s eluant composition over time. More information regarding chromatography can be found here.
  • Tangential Flow Filtration (TFF): This process concentrates the product through an ultrafiltration step. When combined with diafiltration, an ultrafiltration membrane separates target molecules from smaller impurities or buffer components that are then removed from the system by adding fresh buffer or solvent. Bioprocessing pumps are used to create a cross-flow across the surface of the membrane, which helps minimize fouling and blockage of the membrane’s surface. The fluid stream of smaller molecules and ions that have passed through the membrane is called permeate, while larger biomolecules are retained and concentrated in the fluid stream called retentate. In addition, bioprocessing pumps generate the required pressure needed to force the permeate through the membrane, also known as Transmembrane Pressure (TMP).
  • Virus Filtration: Bioprocessing pumps generate the pressure required to drive the virus-containing solution through a filter membrane, which selectively removes viruses and other small particles from the solution. Precise and consistent flow rates and pressures are critical to achieving high separation efficiency.
  • Inline Buffer Dilution: Bioprocessing pumps accurately and precisely dilute concentrated buffer solutions in real-time. The flow rates of the concentrated buffer solution and the diluent are carefully controlled to achieve the desired buffer concentration.

Why Quattroflow Pumps for critical bioprocessing steps?

Choosing the correct pump is critical to ensuring the safe and efficient production of biological products. The following reasons illustrate why Quattroflow® Four-Piston Diaphragm Pumps meet the key requirements of biopharmaceutical processing:

  1. Scalability: The full range of Quattroflow pump models covers flow rates from 0.016 to 16,000 L/hr (0.004 to 4,226 gph) and meets flow-rate demands from process development up to large-scale manufacturing
  2. Sterility: Depending on the pump type, Quattroflow pumps can be sterilized with the following methods:
    • Single Use: Sterilization with gamma-irradiation or by autoclave
    • Multiple Use: Sterilization using steam (sterilize-in-place) or by autoclave
  3. Accuracy and Precision: Quattroflow bioprocessing pumps deliver consistent, low pulsing and precise flow rates to ensure the reproducibility of the manufacturing process
  4. Biocompatible Materials: Product-wetted plastic materials are compatible with most typical buffers, media and solvents and meet USP Cl. VI and BSE/TSE requirements
  5. Flow and Pressure Control: Due to their linear-flow characteristics, bioprocessing pumps from Quattroflow can be dialed into the proper pressure or flow setpoint. Versions with an integrated PID pump controller (Q-Control) and direct pressure and flow controller are also available.
  6. Gentle Product Treatment: Quattroflow pumps produce a gentle pumping action that minimizes shear with high efficiency and low slip that reduces friction-caused heat production

Overall, Quattroflow bioprocessing pumps should be the No. 1 choice for fluid transfer in the most critical and demanding bioprocessing production stages thanks to their reliability, accuracy and ease of use.

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