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    EU authorizes Pfizer-BioNTech COVID vaccine

    The European Commission on Monday conditionally authorized Pfizer and BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine after receiving a recommendation by the European Medicines Agency’s (EMA) Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use earlier in the day.   The fast-tracked decision shortened what is usually a two-month procedure to a matter of hours, spotlighting the dire need for a vaccine as much of Europe faces lockdowns and restrictions amid a winter resurgence of the virus. The c...
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    FDA authorizes Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for emergency use

    The US Food and Drug and Drug Administration (FDA) on Friday authorized Pfizer and BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use in individuals ages 16 and older just one day after the agency’s advisory panel voted 17-4 in favor of the vaccine.   Now that the vaccine has been authorized just three weeks after Pfizer and BioNTech submitted their emergency use authorization (EUA) request, a nationwide rollout of the vaccine is set to begin. FDA Commissioner Stephen ...
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    EMA chief says Pfizer, Moderna data ‘very robust,’ defends vaccine review approach

    Emer Cooke, the European Medicines Agency’s (EMA) newly installed executive director, on Thursday told a European Parliament committee that data submitted in support of COVID-19 vaccines developed by Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna are “very robust”.   The meeting occurred hours before the US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee would meet to discuss authorizing the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine for emergency use and ju...
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    Population Pharmacokinetics: Drugmakers Seek Clarity and Additions to Revised FDA Guidance

    About a dozen drugmakers and industry groups recently offered their opinions on a revised US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) draft guidance related to population pharmacokinetics (PK) analyses submitted as part of new drug applications and biologic license applications. The comments largely seek specific tweaks to the 23-page revised draft, which was released in July , although some of the comments also seek further clarity and new additions to the guidance. Indu...
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    FDA Approves Two More Biosimilars

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Tuesday approved the 22 nd and 23 rd biosimilars: Pfizer’s Ruxience (rituximab-pvvr), which is the second biosimilar to Roche’s Rituxan (rituximab), and Samsung Bioepis’s Hadlima (adalimumab-bwwd), which could end up being the ninth biosimilar to AbbVie’s Humira (adalimumab). Ruxience is approved as a treatment of adult patients with CD20-positive B-cell non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL) to be used as a single agent or in combin...
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    Another Biosimilar Approval From FDA, Another Unknown Launch Date

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Friday approved Pfizer’s Zirabev (bevacizumab-bvzr), the 21 st biosimilar in the US and the second for Roche’s cancer treatment Avastin (bevacizumab). But the launch date in the US for Zirabev, a treatment for five types of cancer, remains unknown, as does the launch date for its predecessor, Amgen’s Mvasi (bevacizumab-awwb), approved in September 2017. Similarly, two Enbrel (etanercept) biosimilars have been approved, the f...
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    Pfizer Appoints Gottlieb to Board of Directors

    Following in the tradition of recently departed US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) commissioners, Scott Gottlieb is joining the board of directors at Pfizer. In addition to his role on the Pfizer board, Gottlieb, an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine, is also resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and a partner at the venture capital firm New Enterprise Associates. Reactions to Gottlieb’s decision to join the Pfizer board ranged from ...
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    Risk-Based Monitoring: Pfizer and BMS Seek Clarity on FDA Draft Guidance

    Pfizer and Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) recently raised questions with and sought further clarity from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on a draft guidance related to the risk-based monitoring (RBM) of clinical trials. The eight-page RBM draft guidance , released in March, comes in the form of eight questions and answers. It expands on guidance from August 2013, known as “ Oversight of Clinical Investigations--A Risk-Based Approach to Monitoring ,” by providing...
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    Industry Seeks Clarity on CGT Draft Guidance

    Pfizer, Perrigo, Teva, Apotex and the Association of Accessible Medicines all sought further clarity from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on draft guidance related to the competitive generic therapy (CGT) designation and CGT exclusivity. The CGT designation is meant to be an incentive for industry to develop generics for drugs that have only one competitor. To date, FDA has granted more than 100 CGT designation requests, and in 2018, between August and Decembe...
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    Biopharma CEOs Explain Problems With Biosimilars to Congress

    Following their Senate Finance Committee hearing in February, all seven biopharmaceutical CEOs have now offered hundreds of pages of written responses to more specific questions. The lackluster biosimilar market in the US is addressed in nearly all their comments, with some executives explaining in detail as to why their biosimilars have yet to gain market share, while undertones of biosimilar fear-mongering linger in others’ comments. Merck CEO Kenneth Frazier expla...
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    Pfizer Uses EHR Data to Support Expanded Indication for Breast Cancer Drug

    In a move that may become more common as the US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) comfort with real-world data (RWD) increases, FDA on Thursday approved a new indication for Pfizer’s Ibrance (palbociclib) in combination with an aromatase inhibitor or fulvestrant to include men with certain types of metastatic breast cancer. The approval is based on RWD from electronic health records and postmarketing reports of Ibrance in male patients sourced from three databases: I...
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    Industry Calls on FDA to Streamline Process of Providing Marketing Status Updates

    Industry groups PhRMA and the Association for Accessible Medicines (AAM), as well as companies Pfizer and Teva Pharmaceuticals are calling on the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to tweak and clarify recently drafted guidance on marketing status updates. The draft guidance from January helps sponsors of new drug applications (NDAs) and abbreviated new drug applications (ANDAs) understand what information they have to share with FDA on the marketing status of thei...