Recombinant therapeutic proteins produced in mammalian cells represent a major class of biopharmaceuticals. In recent years, their demand has increased dramatically and is now driving the development of a variety of improvements to maximize their expression in mammalian cells. Advances in media- and process optimization have already resulted in more than 100-fold improvement in yield, but further insights and subsequent targeted modifications with respect to the general biology of cells (genomics, physiology, selection and adaptation) in bioreactors are hoped to further improve protein yields and quality in the near future.