• RF Quarterly

    A history of expedited pathways: Breakthrough therapy designation, PRIME, Sakigake, and ILAP

    It can take at least a year to 18 months to get a new medicinal product approved in the US, European Union, or United Kingdom. Over the last decade, regulators have introduced initiatives to shorten the time to market for medicines that address seriously debilitating and life-threatening conditions. This article reviews the initiation and achievements of US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA’s) breakthrough therapy designation (BTD), the European Medicines Agency’s (EMA) ...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    FDA explains when it will rescind breakthrough designations

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Thursday released draft guidance explaining its thought process for rescinding breakthrough therapy designation (BTD) during its evaluation of a drug.   While FDA has long asserted its authority to rescind or withdraw BTDs, the new guidance will add clarity for sponsors as to when the agency might revoke the designation. Since designation was created under the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act in 2012,...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    Marks eyes gene therapy development pilot, sees uptick in successful RMAT requests

    Peter Marks, director of Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research (CBER) at the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), attributes an increase in the amount of regenerative medicine advanced therapy (RMAT) requests approved for cell and gene therapies to sponsors “getting the hang” of the agency’s expectations for designation requests.   Marks spoke at the California Separation Science Society’s (CASSS) meeting on 8 June on cell and gene therapies. The meeting was h...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    FDA explains plans to bolster cell and gene therapy approvals through wider messaging

    Updated 25 May 2022 to correct ASGCT's name. Wilson Bryan director of the US Food and Drug Administration’s Office of Tissues and Advanced Therapies (OTA) in the agency’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, told a 19 May meeting  of the American Society of Gene and Cell Therapy (ASGCT) that the division is undertaking a series of internal measures to improve communications with sponsors and to widen its messaging.   These measures are being taken to com...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    Generic drug approvals continued to fall in 2021

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved or tentatively approved 776 Abbreviated New Drug Applications (ANDAs) for generic drugs in 2021, continuing a steady decline in generic approvals in recent years.   In calendar year 2020 , FDA approved or tentatively approved 948 ANDAs for generic drugs, which was down from 1,014 in 2019 . The latest figures are part of the FDA’s Office of Generic Drugs (OGD) 2021 Annual Report .   But the agency approved 93 “fi...
  • Feature ArticlesFeature Articles

    January’s Regulatory Focus: Leadership in RA, expanding diversity, and more

    Feature articles during January focused on regulatory leadership, a novel approach to hiring regulatory professionals, expedited programs for reducing time to approval for certain drugs, and the Cuban biotechnology industry and its response to COVID-19. Keywords – assessment aid, breakthrough therapy, Cuba, diversity, ILAP, leadership, PRIME   Leadership, hiring, and expanding diversity Effective leadership in regulatory affairs is rooted in an understanding a...
  • Feature ArticlesFeature Articles

    Expedited pathways: Breakthrough therapy designation, PRIME, and innovative licensing & access

    Abstract Over the last decade, regulators have introduced initiatives to reduce time to approval for medicines that address an unmet medical need. This article compares the US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA’s) breakthrough therapy designation (BTD), the European Medicine’s Agency’s (EMA’s) PRIority MEdicines (PRIME) scheme, and the innovative licensing and access pathway (ILAP) from the UK’s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) and reviews th...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    Stakeholders seek clarity on FDA cell and gene therapy draft guidance

    Industry, medical societies and other stakeholders have weighed in on draft guidance from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) detailing how sponsors that want to study multiple versions of cell and gene therapies could combine them in a single “umbrella” trial.   The draft guidance, released in September 2021, outlined FDA’s proposed thinking for how this process would work. For cell and gene therapies intended to treat a single disease, sponsors would typically ...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    Gene therapy developers can expect less hand-holding from OTAT

    A growing workload and insufficient staffing have prompted the US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Office of Tissues and Advanced Therapies (OTAT) to institute new processes to expedite its reviews of new cell and gene therapies, said OTAT Director Wilson Bryan at a 6 December webinar sponsored by the Alliance for a Stronger FDA.   At the webinar, Bryan was asked to discuss the impact of the projected workload for OTAT, projections for approving new cell and gene t...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    FDA rolls out more guidance on 'N of 1' gene therapies

    Developers of individualized investigational antisense oligonucleotide (ASO) therapies for ultra-rare diseases received additional guidance from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). In two draft documents, the agency has provided new information for sponsor-investigators and for those overseeing manufacture of these so-called “N of 1” therapies for people with severely debilitating or life-threatening genetic disease.   "Progress in individualized medicines provi...
  • Feature ArticlesFeature Articles

    October’s Regulatory Focus: Linguistic review, advanced therapies in Asia-Pacific, and more

    Feature articles during October included an in-depth look at the linguistic review process in Europe and  reviews of the regulatory pathways for herbal medicinal products, medical devices, and supplements in the EU and for advanced therapies in the Asian-Pacific region. Also included was an article on the challenges of data integrity remediation in cGMP facilities.   Linguistic review and herbal product regulation The linguistic review process for centrally authori...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    New public-private consortium will tackle gene therapies for rare diseases

    Two federal agencies are partnering with pharmaceutical companies and non-profit organizations to form a consortium aimed at boosting the development of gene therapies for rare diseases.   In a Wednesday announcement, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) revealed the launch of the Bespoke Gene Therapy Consortium (BGTC). The consortium’s work will be managed by the Foundation for the NIH and sit within the NIH Acceleratin...