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  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    Experts address clinical challenges for ultra-rare diseases at BIO

    A panel of experts at BIO Digital on Wednesday discussed some of the challenges and regulatory considerations for sponsors developing treatments for ultra-rare diseases where clinical trials could involve a very small number of patients.   When asked where companies should begin their development for extremely rare diseases, Brad Glasscock, global vice president and head of global regulatory affairs at BioMarin said, “First and foremost I think is understanding whether...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    Orphan drug incentives reviewed at BIO

    Orphan drug designation has been a fruitful pathway for drug development, but unmet need remains. Whether changes are needed to the legislation, and how orphan drug research can incorporate patient-focused drug development principles and make room for modern-day collaboration were topics for expert discussion at an orphan drug-focused session during BIO Digital 2020.   The future looks bright for drug development for rare diseases, said session moderator Natasha Bonhom...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    EC offers antitrust reassurances to generic drugmakers cooperating on shortages

    The European Commission on Wednesday reassured the generic drug association Medicines for Europe that member and nonmember companies can work together to battle shortages of critical hospital drugs to treat COVID-19 patients. The commission explains how generic firms may need to coordinate on stock management and distribution “so that not all undertakings focus on one or a few medicines, while others remain in under-production. Such coordination would be contrary to ant...
  • Feature ArticlesFeature Articles

    OTC monograph reform is now law: What’s next?

    This article discusses the impact of over-the-counter (OTC) monograph reform, part of the recently passed Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act . Regulators and public health stakeholders have been championing OTC monograph reform for more than five years. Then, in what seems like a blink of any eye, it is now law, passed by Congress and signed by the President on 27 March 2020 as part of the CARES Act for pandemic relief. The new law reflects the...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    FDA seeks withdrawal of heartburn drugs due to new carcinogen concerns

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Wednesday requested that all manufacturers of drugs containing ranitidine (commonly known as Zantac and used for heartburn) remove all prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) versions from the market because the carcinogen N-Nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) has now been found to increase significantly in samples stored at higher temperatures. The announcement is the most serious in a chain of FDA safety advisories related to NDMA ...
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    FDA Floats Idea of a Rating System for Drug Manufacturers

    The US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Task Force on Drug Shortages supports the idea of creating a new rating system to help drug purchasers, including consumers, better understand the quality management of drug manufacturing facilities. “This idea envisions that pharmaceutical companies could, at their discretion, disclose the rating of the facilities where their drugs are manufactured,” Janet Woodcock, director of FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, w...
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    Public Funds Help Late-Stage Development of About 25% of New Drugs, Study Finds

    One in four new drugs approved in the US between January 2008 and December 2017 received direct funding from public resources for late stage research or through spin-off companies created from public research institutions, a study published in the BMJ on Wednesday found.  As the drug pricing debate has accelerated in recent months, the debate over whether public or private entities do the majority of drug development work has continued, with the general assumption tha...
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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...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    EMA and FDA Historically Agree on Just About Every New Drug Approval, but is That Slowly Changing?

    The European Medicines Agency (EMA) and US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) concur more than 90% of the time in their decisions to approve new drugs, according to a new study from EMA and FDA officials that looked at 107 applications from 2014 to 2016. In just eight of the 107 applications, FDA initially declined to approve a new drug or biologic while EMA approved it, although in all eight of those cases, FDA ended up approving that drug or biologic. And in one case ...
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    Drugmakers Sue HHS for Trying to Add Prices to DTC Ads

    Amgen, Merck, Eli Lilly and the Association of National Advertisers on Friday sued the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) because of a rulemaking that would require pharmaceutical list prices to be shown in direct-to-consumer (DTC) drug advertisements on television. The rule, which was finalized in May and is set to take effect in July, requires that television advertisements for prescription drugs or biological products with a list price of $35 or more con...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    Health Canada Opens Generic Drug Guidances for Consultation

    Health Canada last week released two draft guidances for public consultation as part of the agency’s effort to clarify the criteria for its abbreviated new drug submission (ANDS) pathway for generic drugs.   Specifically, the draft guidances detail how the agency intends to implement a recently proposed regulatory amendment aimed at boosting access to generic drugs and making labeling more consistent and transparent.   “The draft guidance documents have been releas...
  • Regulatory NewsRegulatory News

    EMA Officials Debate Going Beyond Safe and Effective Determinations for New Drugs

    In the US and Europe, drug regulators approve new drugs based on whether the benefits of the new product outweigh the risks. But neither of the regulators consider if such new drugs are superior to drugs currently marketed. Now, three senior officials at the European Medicines Agency (EMA) explain how an added therapeutic benefit criterion or head-to-head comparisons could help to drive more innovative therapies. “The aim of these proposals is to contain the rising c...