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    European Commission Adopts Two Acts on GMPs for Medicines

    Last month, the European Commission adopted two legal acts seeking to improve patient safety through good manufacturing practices (GMP) that ensure the highest quality of medicines for investigational and human use. One of the acts is an  implementing directive  that sets out principles and guidelines of GMP in medicines where the manufacture or import is subject to a manufacturing authorization ( see Article 40 of the Community code Directive (2001/83/EC) ). The ...
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    ICH Plans Work on Clinical Trials Guideline Revision, Pediatric Extrapolation

    The International Council for Harmonisation (ICH) is planning to take up two new topics, according to the minutes released Thursday from the group's meeting in Montreal in May and June. The two topics include the first revision to ICH's 1997 E8 General Considerations for Clinical Trials and a new guideline on pediatric extrapolation in clinical trials, both proposed by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The ICH Assembly also adopted concept papers outlines f...
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    FDA to Close Loophole Allowing Companies to Skirt Pediatric Study Requirements

    FDA commissioner Scott Gottlieb announced Tuesday that the agency will release guidance to close a loophole that allows companies to avoid their obligation to study pharmaceuticals in pediatric populations. The situation, according to Gottlieb, arises if sponsors received an orphan designation for a pediatric subtype of an otherwise common and non-orphaned adult disease. For example, with a condition like inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), a drug may be approved to...
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    FDA Reports on FY2016 Pediatric Device Approvals

    In a report to Congress released this week, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) says it approved 13 high-risk medical devices for pediatric patients in FY2016, the highest number since 2011 when 15 were approved. Under the Food and Drug Administration Amendments Act of 2007 (FDAAA), device makers are required to include information in premarket approval (PMA) and humanitarian device exemption (HDE) applications about pediatric subpopulations that are affected by ...
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    10 Years in, EU Pediatric-Use Marketing Authorization Called a 'Disappointment'

    Biopharmaceutical companies and regulators across Europe have said that in the 10 years since the Pediatric Regulation took effect, some pediatric therapeutic areas have seen progress, though the pediatric-use marketing authorization (PUMA) has not lived up to expectations. Overall, according to a summary of the comments received from 75 stakeholders on the consultation from last November , the European Commission noted that the reward system built into the regul...
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    EMA and FDA Look to Facilitate Development of Gaucher Disease Treatments

    The European Medicines Agency (EMA) and the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Monday released a new strategy document to aid in the development of new treatments for Gaucher disease, a rare lysosomal storage disorder. Given the limited number of patients worldwide with Gaucher disease, EMA and FDA put forth two possible approaches to better facilitate investigations of such products: Extrapolation across age groups within a single drug development program...
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    WHO to Craft Essential Diagnostics List

    The World Health Organization (WHO) has received a recommendation from an expert committee to develop an Essential Diagnostics List (EDL). The committee said the decision to begin developing such a list, agreed to earlier this month, may initially focus on in vitro diagnostics, with initial proposed priority areas including tuberculosis, malaria, HIV and hepatitis B and C. According to WHO , the list "should expand to other areas including other antimicrobial...
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    Caribbean Regulatory System Begins Recommending Generic Drugs

    The Caribbean Public Health Agency/Caribbean Regulatory System (CARPHA/CRS) last month kicked off its work advising Caribbean countries’ governments by assessing and recommending four generic HIV treatments. The recommendations, which follow approval from WHO, included emtricitabine/tenofovir and tenofovir tablets, also known as generic versions of Viread and Truvada (a generic of which also recently won US FDA approval ). The regional initiative is meant to help ...
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    Australia Proposes New Risk-Based Approach to Medicine Variations

    Australia's Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) on Thursday released guidance on a plan to allow companies to make "very low risk" changes to registered medicines after submitting them to TGA and receiving an automated acknowledgement. "These requests are known as 'notifications' but still require an application to the TGA," the regulator explained. "These lowest risk variations do not require evaluation but legally must still be approved by the TGA before imple...
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    WHO Essential Medicines Update Adds Antibiotic use Framework and new HCV & HIV Drugs

    The World Health Organization (WHO) on Tuesday announced updates to its essential medicines list (EML), including new recommendations for antibiotic use and the addition of new drugs to treat hepatitis C, HIV and leukemia. The list, which is intended to serve as a model for the most crucial medicines for ensuring public health, is updated every other year based on recommendations from WHO's Expert Committee on the Selection and Use of Essential Medicines. "These medicin...
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    EMA Adds Five Therapies to PRIME Scheme, Bringing Total to 25

    The European Medicines Agency (EMA) on Wednesday announced that it has accepted five additional therapies to its PRIME (PRIority MEdicines) scheme, bringing the total number of products accepted to the program to 25. The agency also said it denied seven requests for eligibility, which seeks to streamline the development of promising new therapies through earlier scientific advice and increased engagement between EMA and sponsors. While this latest batch of recomme...
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    Challenges Providing Pharmaceutical Products to Syrian Refugees

    This article discusses the difficulties encountered by medical personnel working with refugees in Syria and delivering pharmaceutical products. It describes relevant regulatory policy and guidance for drug procurement and quality. Introduction Providing healthcare aid to civilians during war and crisis is a complicated task. The Syrian war has impacted the healthcare system inside Syria and the neighboring countries. Large and small humanitarian organizations have wor...