• Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    FDA Finalizes Guidance on Tropical Disease PRVs, Offering a Number of Clarifications

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Wednesday finalized guidance on tropical disease priority review vouchers (PRVs), clarifying when a voucher can be used, whether drugmakers are “guaranteed” a six-month review when using a voucher and whether FDA can remove a tropical disease from the list of considered diseases (it can’t). This finalization of the 2008 draft guidance includes 25 questions and answers and includes the following substantive changes based on pu...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    Priority Review Voucher Fees to Decline in FY 2017

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Thursday unveiled the new user fee rates for the tropical disease and rare pediatric disease priority review voucher (PRV) programs. The additional fees necessary to use the vouchers for both programs are set to decline by about $20,000 when compared to last year. Tropical Disease Priority Review Voucher User Fee Year Voucher Fee FY 2011 $4,582,000 FY 2012 $5,280,000 FY 2013 $3...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    Congress Signs Off on Short-Term Extension to Rare Pediatric PRV Program

    The House late Tuesday followed its Senate counterparts and sent to President Barack Obama a re-authorization of the rare pediatric disease priority review voucher (PRV) program that will last through the end of December. A spokeswoman for Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA), a sponsor of the bill, told Focus that between now and 30 December, Congress will discuss ways to amend the program and extend it again. “Our policy changes are in S. 1878, which is headed to the president, so...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    EMA and FDA Set Up New Working Group on Rare Diseases

    The new collaboration between the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced Monday will improve the sharing of information on various aspects of the development and scientific evaluation of medicines for rare diseases. According to EMA, rare diseases affect 30 million people in the EU and approximately the same number in the US, though each disease individually concerns a limited number of patients. And since only a limited n...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    FDA Issues Form 483 for Alexion’s Rhode Island Site

    Rare disease drugmaker Alexion disclosed late Monday in an SEC filing that the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently completed a routine current Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) inspection of the company’s Smithfield, Rhode Island manufacturing facility and issued a Form 483 with three observations. “These observations are inspectional, and do not represent a final FDA determination of compliance. The observations pertain to: completion and closure of certain ...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    House Looks to Reform Tropical Disease Priority Review Voucher Program

    The House Energy and Commerce Committee on Wednesday passed by voice vote an amendment (to an unrelated bill on hospital preparedness for dangerous threats) that would significantly change the priority review voucher (PRV) program for tropical diseases. Background Since 2009, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued nine PRVs to reward companies for developing new drugs to treat rare pediatric and tropical diseases with a voucher that can be sold on the op...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    Regulators, Industry Weigh in on Proposed EU Orphan Regulation Changes

    As the number of orphan drug approvals continues to rise in the EU, the European Commission is now considering feedback from European governments, regulators and industry on how changes to five aspects of the Orphan Regulation may further incentivize the development of drugs for rare diseases. To date, the commission has authorized 117 orphan medicines, 82% of which consist of new active substances, according to a new report .  And while the number of products authorize...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    FDA Calls for End to Priority Review Vouchers as GAO Says Too Early to Gauge Effectiveness

    The US Government Accountability Office (GAO) said Wednesday in a new report that it’s still too early to assess whether the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) three-year-old pediatric priority review voucher (PRV) program has stimulated the development of drugs to treat or prevent rare pediatric diseases. The PRV program offers vouchers that companies can win for gaining approval of new rare pediatric treatments affecting fewer than 200,000 people, more than half o...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    Sanofi Redeems $245M Priority Review Voucher for Type 2 Diabetes Treatment

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) accepted for review the New Drug Application (NDA) for Sanofi’s investigational type 2 diabetes treatment on Monday and granted the use of another Priority Review Voucher (PRV), which speeds up FDA’s decision by four months. In redeeming the voucher, Sanofi had to pay a $2.7 million fee in addition to the standard new drug filing fee of $2.4 million. Retrophin sold the PRV to Sanofi last May for one of the highest amounts eve...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    Expert Committee: FDA Should Allow Mitochondrial Replacement Trials Under Certain Conditions

    While the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) sits on the fence over whether to approve preclinical or clinical trials using mitochondrial replacement techniques (MRT) to help prevent the transmission of certain diseases passed from mother to child, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine came out with a new report on Wednesday detailing how it believes FDA should allow such trials and regulate them. Background ...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    Orphan Medicines in the EU: A 15-Year Review

    With the 15th anniversary of the adoption of the Orphan Regulation in the EU, the European Commission notes in a new report that this landmark regulation has incentivized the development, approval and marketing of more than 100 rare disease treatments, or orphan drugs. According to the European Commission’s fourth inventory of orphan medicines, released Friday, somewhere between 5,000 and 8,000 different rare diseases exist in the EU, impacting between 27 million and 36 ...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    First-in-Class, Rare Disease Drug Approvals Dominated in 2015: A Breakdown from FDA

    Last year was a banner year for the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in terms of new drug approvals, with many of the new drugs coming to market to help rare disease patients and offer new first-in-class options. The total of 45 approvals was well ahead of FDA’s average of about 28 novel approvals between 2006 and 2014, and 36% of those new approvals were for first-in-class drugs while almost half (47%) were to treat rare diseases, or ailments that impact 200,000 or...