Month: January 2017

EMA publishes Q&A on Health Based Exposure Limits – Does the 1/1000 dose criterion come again into play in Cleaning Validation?

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In 2014 the European Medicines Agency (EMA) issued the Guideline on setting health based exposure limits for use in risk identification in the manufacture of different medicinal products in shared facilities. This publication triggered a discussion about the Permitted Daily Exposure (PDE) values in the Pharmaceutical and even in the API Industry, especially regarding crosscontamination and cleaning validation. Now a draft of a Q&A paper from the EMA provides some concretisation.

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In 2014 the European Medicines Agency (EMA) issued the Guideline on setting health based exposure limits for use in risk identification in the manufacture of different medicinal products in shared facilities. As mentioned in the publication itself, this document triggered a discussion about the Permitted Daily Exposure (PDE) values in the Pharmaceutical and even in the API Industry, especially regarding crosscontamination and cleaning validation. Now, the draft of a question & answer paper from the European Medicines Agency provides some concretisation of the guideline.

The document altogether comprises five pages with 14 questions and answers.

The questions – and even more the answers – are very interesting, as shown in question 1 already: Do companies have to establish Health Based Exposure Limits (HBELs) for all products?

The answer is: Yes, but there are references to question 2 and 4 (and their respective answers). Question 2 clarifies what products/active substances are considered as highly hazardous. There are, among others, 5 groups listed, which products should be classified as highly hazardous (e.g.compounds with a high pharmacological potency, daily dose < 1 mg/day (veterinary dose equivalent 0.02 mg/kg)). For highly hazardous substances the answer yes in question 1 is expected. Even more interesting is the link to question and answer 4: Can calculation of HBELs be based on clinical data only (e.g. 1/1000th of the minimum therapeutic dose)? And the answer is yes, but only at designated circumstances. This means the products should have a favourable therapeutic index (safety window) and the pharmacological activity would be the most sensitive/critical effect.

Some further clarification regarding LD 50 is provided in Question 5 and the respective Answer: The use of LD 50 to determine health based limits is not allowed.

There are also more questions and answers regarding Veterinary Medicinal Products, the inspection of the competence of the toxicology expert developing HBELs, Occupational Exposure Limits, cleaning limits, Investigational Medicinal Products and paedric medicinal products and about Cross Contamination. Details will follow.

The document is still a draft and the industry has the opportunity to comment it until the end of April 2017. Let´s see what the final version will bring.

Please also see the draft Questions and answers on implementation of risk based prevention of cross contamination in production and ‘Guideline on setting health based exposure limits for use in risk identification in the manufacture of different medicinal products in shared facilities’on the EMA website.

At ECA´s Cleaning Validation Course, 9-10 February 2017 in Heidelberg, Germany the EMA Q&A draft will also be discussed.

some pics

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///////////EMA, Q&A , Health Based Exposure Limits, 1/1000 dose , criterion,  Cleaning Validation,

Thailand Drug regulatory Update, Take a peep

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[PDF]Regulatory Requirement for the Approval of generic Drug in Thailand …

Apr 13, 2014 – Thailand has its own drug registration format and also follows. ASEAN CTD. … Transparency in the regulatory authorities of member countries.


The Thai FDA (TFDA), one of several agencies under the Ministry of Public Health (MPH), is the regulatory body administering drugs in Thailand. The Drug Control Division of the TFDA is responsible for registration, licensing, surveillance, inspection and adverse event monitoring for all pharmaceuticals and pharmaceutical companies in Thailand. Foreign pharma companies dominate the Thai drug market. Due in part to trade negotiations, regional harmonization and positive economic trends, the pharmaceutical market in Thailand is predicted to double by 2022.There are several versions of the Drug Act currently in effect, and the Thai government is working on a revised version with updated regulations. Under the current laws, pharmaceuticals are categorized as either traditional or modern medicines, with different applications and oversight. Modern medicines are subdivided into three categories, each of which has separate registration requirements. Licenses currently do not require renewal.


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Thai FDA intends to accept dossier in eCTD format: The Drug Regulatory Authority of Thailand (Thai FDA) has initiated the acceptance of Pilot eCTD from October 2014.Read More

eCTD requirements



Step to be followed to submit eCTD application

Taken from

Regulatory Scientist at Kinapse

A) Prepare Application to get a eSubmission Identifier for every application issued. A request to the THAI FDA online service should be submitted to obtain an eSubmission identifier which will require following details.

  • Licensee Number
  • Description of Application
  • Dosage Form
  • INN or Generic Name
  • Strength
  • WHO ATC Code
  • Sequence Type
  • Application form
  • CPP (In case of Importer)

The eSubmission Identifier will be issued within 10 days of application. The Applicant must then make an appointment for submission within 30 days.

B) Prepare valid application along with validation reports as per country (Thailand) specific requirement with regional eSubmission Identifier provided.

The M1 requirements to be kept in consideration while compiling the Submission.

  • Enhanced granularity for each sections
  • Country code is not required in filenames
  • Information relating to orphan market is not mandatory
  • For LCM (Life cycle management) submissions the Operation attribute should be “Replace” in Tracking Table
  • Validation report should be submitted along with the sequence
  • 1.3.1 Product Information has been broken down into three specific sections for Labelling, SPC and the Package leaflet. No other product types are expected. If one file is submitted for this section, it should be submitted under Labelling.
  • Package Leaflet has been broken down into language sections for English, Thai and Other languages.
  • It is recommended that separate files should be submitted for each language.
  • Applicants can re-use the content submitted in other regions (including STF).
  • The identifier is a combination of a letter and seven digits.
  • Working documents are not needed and do not need to be provided within the eCTD framework for Thailand
  • Section 1.5.2 “Information for Generic, ‘Hybrid’ or Bio-similar Applications” has been broken down into three sections and given a section number to make expectations and cross referencing clearer.
  • Only one file should be provided for 1.6 Environmental Risk Assessment. It is not allowed to provide content in both 1.6.1 and 1.6.2.
  • During lifecycle, 1.8.2 Risk management plan should always use the lifecycle operator replace.

C) Dispatch Activity Delivery of the application at Thai FDA in CD/DVD (make an prior appointment with HA at

Thai FDA has proposed a set of media formats to be used while submission of eCTD

  • (CD-R) i.e. Compact Disc-Recordable
  • Digital Versatile Disc-Random Access Memory (DVD-RAM)
  • Digital Versatile Disc-Recordable (DVD+R/-R) recorded

Future Aspect-Import: The eCTD will be validated and imported into the THAI FDA Review System

Feedback: Application feedback (if there are problems experienced during the upload) and review of application by Thai FDA

Ensure that you do not use. 1. Double-sided discs 2. Re-writable disc (protection, authenticity and Stability of information cannot

Ensure that you do not use:

  • Double-sided discs,
  • Re-writable discs (protection, authenticity, and stability of information cannot be guaranteed)
  • Compressed or zipped files (except for validation reports)

FDA publishes Final Guideline on GMP for Combination Products

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In the beginning of 2015 the FDA has published a draft guideline about GMP for Combination Products. Now the final version has been published. What are the differences between the draft and the final version of the FDA Guideline for Combination Products?,16021,15963,Z-VM_n.html

In the beginning of 2015 the FDA has published a draft guideline about GMP for Combination Products. Now the final version has been published. What are the differences between the draft and the final version? In the following you will find an overview:

The final guideline has expanded to now 59 pages (draft: 46 pages). And also the number of footnotes increased from 85 (draft) to 147 (final).

In the table of content there are one new subchapter (II B  Quality and Current Good Manufacturing Practice) and one new chapter (VII Glossary). Subchapter III C was expanded to definitions and terminology. In the following the table of content is listed:

I. Introduction

II. Background
A. Definition of a combination product
B. Quality and Current Good Manufacturing Practices
C. Overview of the final rule
D. The role of the lead center and other agency components

III. General Considerations for CGMP Compliance
A. Demonstrating compliance
B. Investigational products
C. Definitions and terminology
D. What CGMP requirements apply to a product or facility?
E. Control of changes to a combination product

IV. What do I need to know about the CGMP requirements specified in 21 CFR 4.4(b)?
A. Provisions from the device QS regulation specified in 21 CFR 4.4(b)(1)
B. Provisions from the drug CGMPs specified in 21 CFR 4.4(b)(2)
C. Combination products that include biological products and HCT/Ps

V. Application of CGMP requirements to specific types of combination products
A. Prefilled syringe
B. Drug-coated mesh
C. Drug Eluting Stent (DES)

VI. Contact Us

VII. Glossary

VIII. References

In the introduction it is explicitly stated, that “The final rule did not establish any new requirements”. In a footnote the guideline gives an explanation why the term “legacy” combination product has not been used.

In the new subchapter II B  (Quality and Current Good Manufacturing Practice) the guideline mentions, that “the core requirements embedded in these regulations provide for systems that assure proper design, monitoring, and control of manufacturing processes and facilities. This includes establishing a strong quality management system, using appropriate quality raw materials, establishing robust manufacturing and control procedures based on sound design principles, and detecting and investigating product quality deviations. In addition, these regulations call for ongoing assessment of systems and the implementation of corrective actions where appropriate”.

The final document introduces in Section C the new term “CGMP operating system”. This means the operating system within an establishment that is designed and implemented to address and meet the current good manufacturing practice requirements applicable to the manufacture of a combination product. A clarification about constituent parts of cross-labeled combination products is also implemented. Further, there is a new passage about the choice of the GMP-approach (QS regulation vs drug CGMPs) also regarding a streamlined approach and for companies manufacturing different products. Completely new is the passage with the title “Documentation of CGMP Approach”. Here you can also find hints that manufacturerers with products that have been on the market since before GMP for Combination Products (21 CFR 4) came into operation, have to be compliant too. The guideline requires that the information about the “CGMP operating system” should be shared with FDA investigators in the beginning of an inspection.

In the “Demonstrating compliance” subchapter (III A) there is additional information about crossreferenced approaches (21 CFR 820 vs 21 CFR 211 and vice versa). For investigational products (III B) you can find more detailed information about exemptions from part 820 regarding 21 CFR 820.30 (Design).

In the Definition and terminology section (III D) there are amendments regarding container closure aspects and kits. Section III D (What CGMP requirements apply to a product or facility?) details the responsibility of the owner of a combination product and CAPA procedures in shared facilities.

In section III E. (Control of changes to a combination product) information for single entity and co-packed combination product manufacturers has been amended. The passages in IV A (Provisions from the device QS regulation specified in 21 CFR 4.4(b)(1) with regard to 21 CFR 820 about Management Responsibility, Design Controls, Purchasing Controls and CAPA have been extended – including examples – and “modernised”. Terms like quality oversight and QTTP are now mentioned there. Vice versa the passages with regard to 21 CFR 211, 211.84. 211.103, 211.132, 211.137, 211.165, 211.166, 211.167, and 211.170,  (IV B  Provisions from the drug CGMPs specified in 21 CFR 4.4(b)(2)) have also been extended – likewise with examples – and have been “modernised” as well (e.g. parametric release is mentioned).

In the example about prefilled syringes (V A) one can find an amended passsage about Design Controls and a new section about Design History File. In the example about drug-coated mesh (V B) there has also been included a new section about Design History File. In the drug eluting stent example (V. C) there are amendments in the section about 21 CFR 211.184, 21 CFR 211.103 and 21 CFR 211.170. Furthermore all examples comprise editorial changes.

Completely new is the chapter VII (Glossary). The number of references (Chapter VIII) increased to 31 (draft: 19).

There are a lot of changes from the draft to the final document. One chapter (Glossary) and a subchapter ( Quality and Current Good Manufacturing Practices) are new, but there are also new passages and amendments in the final document. Helpful are the examples that have been integrated.

Please also see the Guidance for Industry and FDA Staff: Current Good Manufacturing Practice Requirements for Combination Products for more details.


GMP’s for Early Stage Development of new Drug substances and products

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GMP’s for Early Stage Development of New Drug substances and products

The question of how Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) guidelines should be applied during early stages of development continues to be discussed across the industry and is now the subject of a new initiative by the International Consortium on Innovation and Quality in Pharmaceutical Development (IQ Consortium)—an association of pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies aiming to advance innovation and quality in the development of pharmaceuticals. They have assembled a multidisciplinary team (GMPs in Early Development Working Group) to explore and define common industry approaches and to come up with suggestions for a harmonized approach. Their initial thoughts and conclusions are summarized in Pharm. Technol. 2012, 36 (6), 5458.
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From an industry perspective, it is common to consider the “early” phase of development as covering phases 1 and 2a clinical studies. During this phase, there is a high rate of product attrition and a high probability for intentionally introducing change into synthetic processes, dosage forms, analytical methods, and specifications. The quality system implemented during this early phase should take into account that these changes and adjustments are intrinsic to the work being performed prior to the determination of the final process and validation of the analytical methods during later stages of development.
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FDA guidance is already available on GMP requirements for phase 1 materials. (See Org. Process. Res. Dev. 2008, 12, 817.) Because many aspects of phase 2a clinical studies are similar in their scope and expectations, the working group feels there is an opportunity to extend this guidance across all early phase studies. Because products and processes are less well understood in the early phases of development, activities should focus on accumulating the appropriate knowledge to adequately ensure patient safety. Focusing on this area should ensure that beneficial therapies reach the clinic in an optimum time scale with minimal safety concerns.
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A follow-up article ( Pharm. Technol. 2012, 36 (7), 76−84) describes the working group’s approach to the subject of Analytical Method Validation. Their assessment has uncovered the need to differentiate the terms “validation” and “qualification”. Method qualification is based on the type, intended purpose, and scientific understanding of the type of method in use. Although not used for GMP release of clinical materials, qualified methods are reliable experimental methods that may be used for characterization work such as reference standards and the scientific prediction of shelf life. For example, in early development it would be sufficient for methods used for in-process testing to be qualified, whereas those methods used for release testing and for stability determination would be more fully validated.
In early development, a major purpose of analytical methods is to determine the potency of APIs and drug products to ensure that the correct dose is delivered in the clinic. Methods should also indicate stability, identify impurities and degradants, and allow characterization of key attributes. In the later stages, when processes are locked and need to be transferred to worldwide manufacturing facilities, methods need to be cost-effective, operationally viable, and suitably robust such that the methods will perform consistently. irrespective of where they are executed.
The authors advocate that the same amount of rigorous and extensive method-validation experiments, as described in ICH Q2, “Analytical Validation”, is not needed for methods used to support early stage drug development. For example, parameters involving interlaboratory studies (i.e., intermediate precision, reproducibility, and robustness) are not typically performed during early phase development, being replaced by appropriate method-transfer assessments and verified by system suitability requirements. Because of changes in synthetic routes and formulations, the impurities and degradation products formed may change during development.
Accordingly, related substances are often determined using area percentage by assuming that the relative response factors are similar to that of the API. As a result, extensive studies to demonstrate mass balance are typically not conducted during early development.
Detailed recommendations are provided for each aspect of method validation (specificity, accuracy, precision, limit of detection, limit of quantitation, linearity, range, robustness) according to the nature of the test (identification, assay, impurity, physical tests) for both early- and late phase development. These recommendations are also neatly summarized in a matrix form.
Above text drew attention to a series of articles from the IQ Consortium (International Consortium on Innovation and Quality in Pharmaceutical Development) on appropriate good manufacturing practices (GMP) for the early development phases of new drug substances and products. The fifth article in this series(Coutant, M.; Ge, Z.; McElvain, J. S.; Miller, S. A.; O’Connor, D.; Swanek, F.; Szulc, M.; Trone, M. D.; Wong-Moon, K.; Yazdanian, M.; Yehl, P.; Zhang, S.Early Development GMPs for Small-Molecule Specifications: An Industry Perspective (Part V) Pharm. Technol. 2012, 36 ( 10) 8694) focuses on the setting of specifications during these early phases (I and IIa).
Due to the high attrition rate in early development, the focus should be on consistent specifications that ensure patient safety, supported by preclinical and early clinical safety studies. On the basis of the cumulative industry experience of the IQ working group members, the authors of this paper propose standardized early phase specification tests and acceptance criteria for both drug substance and drug product. In addition to release and stability tests, consideration is given to internal tests and acceptance criteria that are not normally part of formal specifications, but which may be performed to collect information for product and process understanding or to provide greater control.
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The drug substance used in preclinical animal studies (tox batch) is fundamental in defining the specifications for an early phase clinical drug substance (DS). Here, internal targets rather than formal specifications are routinely used while gathering knowledge about impurities and processing capabilities. At this stage the emphasis should be on ensuring the correct DS is administered, determining the correct potency value, and quantitating impurities for toxicology purposes. For DS intended for clinical studies, additional testing and controls may be required; the testing may be similar to that for the tox batch, but now with established acceptance criteria. For these stages the authors propose a standardized set of DS specifications, as follows.
Description range of colour
identification conforms to a reference spectrum
counterion report results
assay 97–103% on a dry basis
impurities NMT 3.0% total, NMT 1.0% each
unidentified NMT 0.3%
unqualified NMT 0.15%
mutagenic follow EMA guidelines (pending ICH M7 guidance)
inorganic follow EMA guidelines (pending ICH Q3D guidance)
residual solvents use ICH Q3C limits or other justified limits for solvents used in final synthetic step
water content report results
solid form report results
particle size report results
residue on ignition NMT 1.0%
These may be altered in line with any specific knowledge of the compound in question. For example, if the DS is a hydrate or is known to be hygroscopic or sensitive to water, a specified water content may be appropriate. Of particular note is the use of impurity thresholds which are 3 times higher than those defined in ICH Q3 guidelines. Q3 was never intended to apply to clinical drugs, and higher thresholds can be justified by the limited exposure that patients experience during these early stages. Mutagenic impurities are the exception here, since in this area the existing official guidance does cover clinical drugs.
The fourth article in the series(Acken, B.; Alasandro, M.; Colgan, S.; Curry, P.; Diana, F.; Li, Q. C.; Li, Z. J.; Mazzeo, T.; Rignall, A.; Tan, Z. J.; Timpano, R.Early Development GMPs for Stability (Part IV) Pharm. Technol. 2012, 36 ( 9) 6470) considers appropriate approaches to stability testing during early clinical phases. Appropriate stability data at suitable storage conditions are required to support filing the clinical trial application (CTA/IND/IMPD) and use of the clinical material through the end of the clinical study. Several factors from business, regulatory, and scientific perspectives need to be taken into account when designing early stability studies, such as the risk tolerance of the sponsoring organization, the inherent stability of the drug substance and prior product, process and stability knowledge, the regulatory environment in the countries where the clinical trial will be conducted, and the projected future use of the product.
Often non-GMP DS batches are manufactured first and placed on stability to support a variety of product development activities.In many cases these batches will be representative of subsequent GMP batches from a stability perspective and can be used to establish an initial retest period for the DS and support a clinical submission. In early development, it is common for the manufacturing process to be improved; therefore, as the DS process evolves, an evaluation is needed to determine whether the initial batch placed on stability is still representative of the improved process. The authors advocate a science- and risk-based approach for deciding whether stability studies on new process batches are warranted.
The first step is to determine which DS attributes have an effect on stability. This step can be completed through paper-based risk assessments, prior knowledge, or through a head-to-head short-term stability challenge. If the revised process impacts one or more of these stability-related quality attributes, the new batch should be placed on stability—otherwise not. Typical changes encountered at this stage include changes in synthetic pathway, batch scale, manufacturing equipment or site, reagents, source materials, solvents used, and crystallization steps.
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In most cases, these changes will not result in changes in DS stability. Changes to the impurity profile are unlikely to affect stability, since most organically related impurities will be inert. On the other hand, catalytic metals, acidic or basic inorganic impurities, or significant amounts of residual water or solvents may affect stability; thus, changes to these attributes would typically require the new batch to be placed in the stability program. Similarly, any changes to polymorphic form, particle size, or counterion would warrant extra testing. Packaging changes of the bulk material to a less protective package may require stability data to support the change.
Three approaches to stability data collection are commonly used. One is that an early, representative DS batch is placed under real-time and accelerated conditions (e.g., 25 °C/60% RH and 40 °C/75% RH), and stability results for a few time points (e.g., 1–6 months) are generated to support an initial retest period (e.g., 12 months or more). A second approach is to use high stress conditions such as a high temperature and high humidity with a short time. A third approach is the use of stress studies at several conditions coupled with modelling. The retest period derived from these types of accelerated or stress studies can be later verified by placing the first clinical batch into real-time stability studies under ICH accelerated and long-term conditions. Future extensions of the retest/use period can be based on real-time data.

“ALL FOR DRUGS” CATERS TO EDUCATION GLOBALLY, No commercial exploits are done or advertisements added by me. This article is a compilation for educational purposes only.

P.S. : The views expressed are my personal and in no-way suggest the views of the professional body or the company that I represent