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    FDA Looks Ahead and Back on Orally Inhaled and Nasal Generic Drugs

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has come a long way when it comes to locally acting orally inhaled and nasal drug products (OINDPs) and in the next five years of generic drug user fees, the agency is looking at further progress on some unique challenges, according to a regulatory science report on OINDPs. Background FDA’s Office of Generic Drugs (OGD) explained how the performance of OINDPs has been notoriously difficult to characterize because of a lac...
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    House E&C Offers Recommendations to Improve 340B Drug Pricing Program

    The House Energy & Commerce (E&C) Committee on Wednesday released an 80-page report outlining issues and recommendations to improve the 340B drug pricing program, which helps reduce the prices of certain drugs for participating hospitals, health centers and other entities that provide care for vulnerable patients. The 80-page report follows an October House E&C hearing in which hospital executives pushed back on the idea that the 340B program should be narrowed o...
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    CDER Report on Novel Approvals Highlights Firsts in 2017

    2017 was a year of firsts for the US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER), with initial approvals in at least five medical conditions and other firsts that might not end up on the final scorecard, like the first biosimilar cancer treatment or the first immediate-release opioid with abuse-deterrent properties. And though the total 46 approvals is the second-highest number of approvals by CDER ever, according to the CDER ...
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    New Study Looks at FDA's Use of Social Media to Communicate on Drug Safety

    A new study looking at the US Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) use of social media to communicate about drug safety finds that the agency could improve its impact by developing social media strategies and taking a more active role on web platforms. The study, conducted by researchers at Harvard Medical School, Northeastern University, Boston Children's Hospital and The Ohio State University, and funded by FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, looks specifica...
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    HHS Secretary Nominee: 'No Silver Bullet' to Bring Down Drug Prices

    President Donald Trump's Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary nominee Alex Azar told the Senate Finance Committee on Tuesday that drug prices "are too high" and he will work to bring them down, though, "There's no silver bullet." Azar previously told the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee that drug prices will be his top priority. The comments on Tuesday followed questions raised by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) and others regardi...
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    Industry Groups Explain Competition Issues in the US Pharma Market

    Industry groups representing generic and brand-name drugs, pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) and pharmacies offered their comments on a November meeting held at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on possible solutions to increase competition and lower pharmaceutical prices in the US. The organizations discussed differing views on what can be done, with the generic group noting its own declining prices and possible ways to combat abuses, the brand-name industry point...
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    HHS' OIG to PhRMA: Free Pharmaceuticals Needed in 2018

    With a nonprofit that paid almost $100 million in 2015 financial grants to patients now saying that it will not offer such payments in 2018, Gregory Demske, chief counsel to the Department of Health and Human Services' Office of the Inspector General (OIG), sent a letter on Thursday seeking help from the pharmaceutical industry group PhRMA in providing free drugs.  The situation arises as OIG found that the nonprofit, known as the Caring Voice Coalition (CVC), may h...
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    More Than 100 Days After Hurricane Maria, Drug Shortages Situation Expected to Improve

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Thursday announced that shortages of IV saline are expected to improve early this year as Baxter – a leading producer of IV saline fluids – has said all its facilities on Puerto Rico have now returned to the commercial power grid. The good news on Baxter comes as the agency said all other companies that were on an initial list of drugs considered at risk of potential shortages – because the drugs were largely or entirely...
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    OPDP Letters: FDA Closes Out 2017 With Record Low

    In the last days of 2017, the US Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) Office of Prescription Drug Promotion (OPDP) issued a warning letter to over-the-counter (OTC) drugmaker Avanthi, Inc. for omitting risk information in a panel for the weight loss drug Lomaira (phentermine hydrochloride USP). The warning letter brings the total number of enforcement letters issued by OPDP in 2017 to four (three warning letters and one untitled letter), a record low for the agency. Whi...
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    FDA Targets Multiple Review Cycles With New Draft Guidance, MAPP

    Fresh out of a record year for generic drug approvals, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Wednesday kicked off the new year by releasing new draft guidance and a new manual of policies and procedures (MAPP) with an eye toward decreasing the number of review cycles abbreviated new drug applications (ANDAs) undergo before approval. Multiple review cycles has been an outstanding challenge for the agency in years past, with less than 10% of ANDAs winning ap...
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    Best Practices for IND Sponsor Communications: FDA Finalizes Guidance

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) last week finalized guidance from 2015 on the best practices for communications between investigational new drug application (IND) sponsors and FDA. The guidance describes what to expect in milestone meetings (i.e. pre-IND, end-of-Phase 1 and Phase 2 and pre-NDA/BLA [new drug application/biologics license application] meetings) and how sponsors and FDA work collaboratively during the drug development process. In addition, ...
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    Ruling Against Novartis Could Have Wider Implications for Generic Drug Labels

    California's Supreme Court on Thursday ruled against Novartis in a decision that could have wider implications for whether brand-name or generic drugmakers should be held liable for warning consumers of risks in their drug labels. In a departure from other recent rulings, the highest California court found that a brand-name drug manufacturer's duty to warn consumers does extend to a generic, but only because federal regulations currently require generic drugs to carr...