New and Revised Product-Specific Bioequivalence Guidances Announced

In the prepublication page of the Federal Register Notice (here) published today, OGD announced 28 new bioequivalence recommendations and revised 53 previously issued recommendations.  While the new and revised guidance documents appear on the listing of Product-Specific Guidances for Generic Drug Development (here), the links to the new and revised documents were not yet active at the time of this writing.

October 2019 Approval Actions and Receipts Reported by OGD

OGD reported the official approval actions, receipts, and Complete Response Letters for the first month of FY 2020.  There were 57 full approval actions and 8 tentative approval actions for a total of 65 approval actions for the month of October (we reported 52 and 9 actions respectively here), so it appears that there were some adjustments made to arrive at the final official numbers (along with some delay in reporting full approval actions).

With Thanksgiving on the Horizon, November ANDA Approvals Status

With the FDA reporting posted through November 18th, the OGD has issued full-approval actions for just twenty-four ANDAs and has issued tentative approval actions for two ANDAs.  Thanksgiving week is a notoriously slow week for approval actions due to the holiday and staff absences, so November looks like it will be a somewhat lean month for approvals. 

Indoor shot of young European Caucasian girl looking at financia

Now That the ANDA is Approved…What Do We Do with It?

On the last day of at the Association for Accessible Medicines GRx-Biosims conference in Bethesda, members of the FDA joined industry for an informative and interactive discussion on post-approval supplements.  Dr. Paul Schwartz and his colleague Olugbenga Okubadejo expressed satisfaction with the current state of the post-approval supplement process, as well as the example of teamwork it has taken to get it there (both within the FDA and also in partnership with industry).  

Gottlieb Tells Attendees at GRx-Biosims Conference About His Term as Commissioner

Dr. Scott Gottlieb is back in the private sector and took the time to give the attendees at the AAM conference a brief overview of his experience as Commissioner.  Dr. Gottlieb spoke about the creation of the Competition Action Plan which addressed action on the following issues:

  • Gaming the system through REMS and restricted distribution systems and patent issues
  • Devising a path forward for faster approval of complex generic drug products
  • Anticompetitive tactics

He also spoke about what,

Engineers examining a machine in a factory

It Is All About the “Risk”

Is there a Pre-Approval Inspection (PAI)? When will it be?  Will our site be inspected?  The anxiety-tinged queries from production (and management) personnel start almost as soon as an application is submitted, and until now regulatory personnel had little answers to offer except vague reassurances like, “We have to wait and see” or “It’s up to OPQ”.  

Audience Perspective – Both Sides of the Controlled Correspondence Story; One Common Problem

At the Association for Accessible Medicines GRx-Biosims conference currently ongoing in Bethesda, members of the FDA and industry came together to present opinions and discuss the Controlled Correspondence process.  Controlled Correspondence (CC) between the FDA and industry is very much like an important pen pal relationship (where you only write to each other regularly, but never meet).  

Drug/Device Combination Products, Challenges and Opportunities

On the second day of AAM’s GRx-Biosims Conference, in Bethesda, Maryland, a session was held related to drug/device combination products.  The session included several presenters from the FDA and industry.  While the challenges with the drug/device combinations was well covered in the session, there wasn’t a lot of focus on the opportunities.

The industry,

Office of Compliance Reports Country Warning Letter Winner for 2019 Flip

Donald Ashley, JD, Director of the Office of Compliance at CDER reported a rather surprising statistic relative to the country that received the most warning letters in FY 2019!  And the winner is – the United States!  Domestic firms received 54 warning letters, followed by India with 17 and China with 14.  Previous years had India or China with the dubious distinction of being issued the most warning letters.

OGD Director Provides Update On Generic Program

Dr Sally Choe, Director, Office of Generic Drugs, outlined the actions that OGD has taken for outreach to stakeholders, citing the many workshops and seminars in which OGD participated.  She provided a view of the GDUFA regulatory science initiatives, including guidance on complex products, internal alignment on complex issues, confidence in generic substitution, review tool development,

The Question of Generics and Emerging Technology

At the Association for Accessible Medicines GRx-Biosims conference currently ongoing in Bethesda, FDA called on Generic firms to be involved and participate in innovation and FDA’s Emerging Technology initiative.  We heard that innovation was not something that should be limited to just Brand Companies.  But, in the field of Generics, where Q1/Q2 and sameness or interchangeability is key,

Keeping an Eye on The Ultimate Goal – How to Ensure Success In Developing Complex Generics

One of the popular sessions in GRx+Biosims Conference held in Bethesda on November 4, 2019 was about Developing Complex Generic Products – How to Ensure Success. The session involved presentation and discussion by FDA and industry. Both sides agreed that the most important factor in assuring success in the development of complex generic is communication,

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AAM GRx-Biosims Meeting Day One Morning Highlights

The GRx-Biosims 2019 meeting started off with a meditation and stretching exercise; after that, we had to put our minds to work and begin exercising out neurons.  Anna Abram, Deputy Commissioner for Policy, Legislation, and International Affairs, provided an update on generic drug activity, action plans, and biosimilars.  Key points and highlights were:

  • Record breaking number of ANDA approvals in FY 2019 (935)
  • 125 first-time generic approvals
  • 138 approvals for complex generics
  • 205 product-specific guidances
  • The use of the Mutual Recognition Agreement with the EU on inspections designed to keep regulatory authorities from duplicating inspectional efforts
  • FDA has approved twenty-three biosimilars
  • However,