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  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    EMA in 2014: A Landmark Year for Approvals, With Eyes on the Future

    In the European Medicines Agency's (EMA) Annual Report 2014 , top regulatory officials describe the agency's role as both a "gatekeeper" and "enabler." This dual role means that the agency must not only work to ensure the safety of patients in the EU, but also to facilitate the development of new and innovative therapies. By the Numbers 2014 was a landmark year for EMA in many ways. The agency recommended record numbers of products to treat rare diseases , launched it...
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    RAPS Seeks Applications for 2015 Fellows

    RAPS is calling for applications for the 2015 class of RAPS Fellows. The RAPS Fellows program was launched in 2008 to recognize senior regulatory professionals for their continued significant contributions and leadership in the advancement of the regulatory profession. This year’s Fellows will be honored during 2015 RAPS: The Regulatory Convergence , which will take place 24–28 October in Baltimore. “RAPS Fellows represent the best of the regulatory professi...
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    Should You Pursue a Master's Degree or a Regulatory Affairs Certificate?

    There is mounting evidence that pursuing a professional or graduate certificate may be a very savvy career investment. The popularity of certificates is on the rise. According to a 2012 study from the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, certificates are the fastest growing postsecondary credential, and second only to bachelor’s degrees in the number earned each year. About 10% of regulatory professionals now have postgraduate certifica...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    New FDA Program to Expedite the Approval of 'Breakthrough' Medical Devices

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has put the finishing touches on two policies intended to expedite access to potentially life-saving devices meant for patients with life-threatening diseases or conditions. Background FDA's Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH) has for several years been putting the finishing touches on two conceptually related guidance documents: Expedited Access for Premarket Approval and De Novo Medical Devices Intended for U...
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    FDA to Device Industry: Teach us More About Diagnostics and Sequencing

    The US Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) medical device regulators are once again preparing to expand a program they use to learn about cutting-edge and essential medical technologies, this time with a particular focus on in vitro diagnostics and next generation sequencing (NGS) technology. Background The program FDA has proposed to extend is known as the Experiential Learning Program (ELP), and was first proposed in September 2011 by FDA's medical device regulatory ...
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    FDA Approving Most New Drugs and Biologics During Their First Review, Report Finds

    The US Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) is now approving more new drugs and biologics during their first review cycles than at any time since at least 2008, a new FDA-commissioned report shows. Background The report , conducted by the Eastern Research Group (ERG) on behalf of FDA, is focused on the fifth iteration of the Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA) , which was passed in 2012 under the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act (FDASIA) . P...
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    Can Drug Development be Accelerated? FDA Wants Help

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is soliciting input on how it might accelerate the development of certain drug products through the use of new and emerging biomarkers. Background In FDA's telling, a qualified biomarker —"an objective characteristic that is measured and evaluated as an indicator of normal biologic processes, pathogenic processes, or pharmacologic responses to treatment"—can help drug development in several ways. For example, a biomarker migh...
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    How Does the Pharmaceutical Industry Really Work? FDA Wants its Managers to Know

    The Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) has announced that it plans to continue a program which allows pharmaceutical companies to invite regulators to visit their manufacturing sites to better understand how the industry operates. Background The program, known as the Regulatory Project Management Site Tours and Regulatory Interaction Program, or the "Site Tours" program, has been in effect in various forms since 1999, when it was created by CDER's Training a...
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    EMA to Share Information About Generic Drugs With Other Regulators

    The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has announced it is ready to begin sharing its assessments of generic drugs as part of an ongoing pilot with participating regulatory authorities. The goal of the pilot program, known as the International Generic Drug Regulators Pilot (IGDRP), is to bolster collaboration with regulators around the world and address the challenge of assessing generic drug applications. Background In October 2011, regulatory authorities from Australia...
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    Six Drugs Selected to Advance in EMA's Adaptive Pathways Pilot Program

    The European Medicines Agency (EMA) recently announced that it has selected six drugs to move forward in its adaptive pathways (formerly adaptive licensing) pilot program. Background In March 2014 EMA announced it would be launching an adaptive pathways pilot program that would seek to accelerate patient access to drugs intended to treat serious unmet medical needs. The adaptive pathways program would allow drugs to receive approval for use with a narrow indication o...
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    Obama Signs Special Ebola Incentive Program Into Law

    President Barack Obama has signed a new bill into law allowing any pharmaceutical or biotechnology company that successfully develops a product to treat the Ebola virus to obtain a special voucher potentially worth millions—and even billions—of dollars. The law, Adding Ebola to the FDA Priority Review Voucher Program Act , was signed into law by Obama on 16 December 2013. The law focuses on FDA's neglected tropical disease priority review voucher (PRV) program, a pro...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    Ebola Voucher Bill Clears Senate, on Course to Become Law

    The US Senate has passed legislation that would overhaul the Neglected Tropical Disease Priority Review Voucher  (PRV) system in the hopes of making it more enticing to pharmaceutical companies, and in particular those developing new treatments for the Ebola virus. S.2917, the Adding Ebola to the FDA Priority Review Voucher Program Act , passed the US Senate by unanimous consent on 2 December 2013. "Today the Senate took a strong step to support that mission by pass...