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  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    FDA orphan drug updates at NORD Summit

    Officials from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) provided updates on the agency’s efforts to support the development of medical products for rare diseases at the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) Summit this week.   In his keynote address on Thursday, FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn said that FDA had already approved 51 orphan indications through July of this year and acknowledged that the agency’s Office of Orphan Products Development (OOPD) has se...
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    Combination products: FDA releases PDUFA VI program report

    A new independent report on the US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) review practices for combination products under the Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA VI) gives the agency generally positive marks but finds room for refinements in communication and technology to improve the pre-submission and review process.   The report , commissioned by FDA as part of its PDUFA VI commitments, was conducted by Eastern Research Group and looked at FDA staff and sponsor e...
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    European Commission reviews impact of orphan, pediatric regulations

    The European Commission on Tuesday published the results of a yearslong evaluation of the EU’s orphan and pediatric medicines regulations it says will be used to guide future legislative changes and shape the EU pharmaceutical strategy.   The more than 100-page evaluation reviews the positive impacts and shortcomings of the orphan regulation, Regulation (EC) No 141/2000 , and the pediatric regulation, Regulation (EC) No 1901/2006 , based on external studies and var...
  • Feature ArticlesFeature Articles

    Regulation of advanced therapy medicinal products in the EU

    This article explains some of the terminology relating to advanced therapy medicinal products (ATMPs), including gene and cell-based therapies, tissue-engineered products, and combined ATMPs. The author explains the key EU regulations and guidance documents for each therapy type and discusses marketing authorization, accelerated regulatory pathways, and market access. He advises companies navigating this complex regulatory environment to engage with the regulatory agencies...
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    Experts address clinical challenges for ultra-rare diseases at BIO

    A panel of experts at BIO Digital on Wednesday discussed some of the challenges and regulatory considerations for sponsors developing treatments for ultra-rare diseases where clinical trials could involve a very small number of patients.   When asked where companies should begin their development for extremely rare diseases, Brad Glasscock, global vice president and head of global regulatory affairs at BioMarin said, “First and foremost I think is understanding whether...
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    Orphan drug incentives reviewed at BIO

    Orphan drug designation has been a fruitful pathway for drug development, but unmet need remains. Whether changes are needed to the legislation, and how orphan drug research can incorporate patient-focused drug development principles and make room for modern-day collaboration were topics for expert discussion at an orphan drug-focused session during BIO Digital 2020.   The future looks bright for drug development for rare diseases, said session moderator Natasha Bonhom...
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    FDA releases compliance program for CDER, CDRH-led combination product inspections

    In a newly issued compliance program , the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) explains its approach to inspections of Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER)- and Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH)-led combination products.   The 46-page document lays out FDA’s intended implementation of the compliance program; inspectional operations and reporting considerations; sampling and analytical testing expectations; regulatory and administrative stra...
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    FDA abandons proposal for devices referencing drugs

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Thursday said it will abandon a proposed regulatory approach for medical devices referencing drugs (DRDs) that would have allowed devices to be authorized for new uses with already approved drugs when the drugmaker does not want to collaborate on the new use.   The decision comes after FDA held a public hearing to discuss the scientific, regulatory and legal challenges posed by the approach in November 2017. At the time, FDA...
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    FDA drafts guidance on emergency-use injector reliability

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) this week issued draft guidance explaining how combination product developers can demonstrate that their emergency-use injectors will reliably deliver drugs as intended in a life-threatening emergency.   The guidance specifically applies to emergency-use injectors that are prefilled or co-packaged with emergency drugs or biologics, such as those to treat anaphylaxis, and is intended to expand on FDA’s 2013 guidance Technical ...
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    FDA to Congress: Pediatric Information Lacking in 36% of Relevant Orphan Drug Labels

    In a report to Congress, the US Food and Drug Administration said that there is a public health need for additional pediatric information in labeling for over one-third of approved orphan indications that are relevant in the pediatric population. FDA research, conducted as part of the FDA Reauthorization Act of 2017  (FDARA), found that of all drugs that were approved for an orphan indication between 1 April 1999 and 31 August 2018, a total of 548 orphan indications we...
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    Drugmaker Petitions FDA to Revoke Sublocade Orphan Designation

    A citizen petition filed last week by law firm Goodwin Procter on behalf of Pennsylvania-based drugmaker Braeburn calls on the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to revoke the orphan designation granted to Indivior’s opioid use disorder treatment Sublocade (buprenorphine extended-release injection).   “Sublocade is not now, nor was it ever a bona fide orphan drug, particularly since more than two million Americans currently are afflicted by opioid addiction,” the pe...
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    Patient Groups, Industry Seek Changes to Rare Disease Drug Guidance

    Patient groups, drugmakers and other organizations are calling for changes to the US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) recently revised draft guidance on developing drugs to treat rare diseases.   The 24-page draft guidance was revised last February after first being published in 2015. The revision included updates to the agency’s approach to natural history studies, a discussion of issues for evaluating biomarkers for consideration as surrogate endpoints and a ne...