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    FDA panel split on approach to COVID-19 vaccines for younger children

    Members of the US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee (VRBPAC) disagreed as to whether the agency should grant emergency use authorizations (EUAs) for COVID-19 vaccines for children at a 10 June meeting.   Some said that EUAs were necessary to get the pediatric population vaccinated quickly to achieve herd immunity as the country emerges from the pandemic and that these vaccines should be available soon as th...
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    FDA clarifies deferral policy on pediatric studies for new cancer drugs

    Final guidance from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) specifies when sponsors must conduct pediatric studies for new cancer drugs as well as when those requirements can be waived or deferred.   Sponsors are required to evaluate these oncology drugs in pediatric populations for applications submitted on or after 18 August 2020, under changes made by the FDA Reauthorization Act of 2017 (FDARA).   The guidance addresses molecularly targeted oncology drugs for ...
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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...
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    EMA nominates executive director to replace Rasi

    The European Medicines Agency’s (EMA) Management Board on Thursday nominated Emer Cooke from a short list of candidates to succeed Guido Rasi as the agency’s next executive director.   Rasi, whose second term as EMA executive director ends on 15 November, served as Executive Director from 2011-2014 before being forced to step down after the European Union Civil Service Tribunal annulled his appointment. (RELATED: Rasi returns to head EMA for five-year term , Regula...
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    Regulatory Explainer: Everything You Need to Know About FDA’s Priority Review Vouchers

    Since 2007, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a handful of special "priority review" vouchers (PRVs) which allow its recipient to expedite the review of any one of its new drug products. What are these vouchers, why is FDA issuing them and what benefit might they have for society? Find out in our latest Regulatory Explainer on the Priority Review Voucher system. Last updated on 25 February 2020 to include: Vifor Pharma said on 17 February that it p...
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    Danish Medicines Agency Ramps Up Capacity in Medical Devices

    The Danish Medicines Agency's Medical Devices Unit is “massively building up capacity” in the area of medical devices, the agency said Tuesday, to better deal with the incoming EU device legislation and to address rapid changes in technological development. A new fee structure will allow the devices unit to increase its staff capacity from about 14 employees to about 40 employees once all new employees have been recruited next spring. The unit will also work more closel...
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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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    FDA Finalizes Guidance on Pediatric Information in Drug Labels

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Wednesday finalized guidance on the content and placement of pediatric information within the labeling of drugs and biologics.   “The goal of this guidance is to provide recommendations to help ensure that information on the use of prescription drugs in pediatric populations (whether positive, negative, or inconclusive) is consistently placed in the proper sections and subsections within labeling so that the information is c...
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    EMA Tells Pharma Companies to Continue to Prep for UK’s Withdrawal

    With an extension in place that will push the UK's withdrawal from the EU back to either April or May, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) told pharmaceutical companies on Monday to continue their preparations for Brexit. Under the European Council decision from last Friday, if the withdrawal agreement between the UK and the EU is approved by the UK House of Commons by 29 March 2019, the extension will be until 22 May 2019. But if the withdrawal agreement is not approve...
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    EMA Launches Operations in Amsterdam

    The European Medicines Agency (EMA) on Monday kicked off operations at its temporary premises at the Spark building in Amsterdam Sloterdijk after moving out of its Canary Wharf office in London on 1 March.   EMA says it is also working with Dutch authorities to finish readying its temporary premises ahead of 30 March, when the agency’s seat officially switches from London to Amsterdam.   “By Monday 18 March, when EMA will be settled in the Spark building, close to ...
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    EMA Expands Online Portal for Parallel Distribution Submissions

    The European Medicines Agency (EMA) on Monday announced that going forward, parallel distributors will be required to use its recently launched secure online portal, known as Iris, to manage and submit parallel distribution notifications.   Background   Parallel distribution, also known as re-exportation, is a process by which companies in the EU distribute centrally authorized medicines between member states, independent of their marketing authorization holder (...
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    Rare Pediatric PRV Program Not Linked to Uptick in New Drugs Starting Trials, Study Finds

    The rare pediatric priority review voucher (PRV) program was not found to be associated with an increase in the number or rate of new rare pediatric disease drugs that began clinical trials, a Health Affairs study found. But the researchers from Harvard Medical School, working on what they said is the first study on the impact of the rare disease PRV program on drug development, also found that their data do provide some encouraging news about rare pediatric disease d...