Category: <span>Regulatory</span>

The FDA’s ICH Q9 quality risk management (QRM) guidance material is the foundation for understanding and evaluating patient risks associated with developing and manufacturing pharmaceuticals. This three-part paper describes approaches a team of subject matter experts (SMEs) can use for implementing two important applications of QRM. Part I provides a method for identifying and remediating threat risks that may affect the product’s quality or other important aspects of a manufacturing enterprise’s lifecycle, from product research and development to commercial manufacturing. The second QRM application covered in Part II manages patient risks by identifying, evaluating, and managing risks associated with process parameters (PP) on the product’s critical quality attributes (CQAs). The final paper, Part III, describes an approach for accepting or further mitigating the risks evaluated by the QRM exercise…

Biologics Production Guidance Mammalian Cell Culture Quality Risk Management (QRM) Regulatory Unit Operations

The heterogenous group of advanced therapy medicinal products (ATMPs) are biologics with frequently limited viral safety profiles. As compared to well-established biologics such as monoclonal antibody products, the risk of virus contamination is significantly higher for some ATMPs. The standard approaches and tools used to mitigate the viral risk have limitations, leaving open the chances of missing virus contamination in an ATMP manufacturing process in both upstream and downstream. Next-generation sequencing (NGS) technology can overcome the residual risk by having the potential to detect any kind of virus contamination based on its inherent capability to detect any kind of nucleic acid in a sample. It perfectly combines the benefits and compensates for the downsides of the existing testing tools. It will replace a bunch of different established testing methods at improved turnaround times and, in the end, reduced overall costs. The combination of these characteristics is making NGS-based virus testing an in-demand and preferred approach to mitigating the virus contamination risk across all kinds of biologics mid- and long-term.

Bioinformatics Biologics Production Cell & Gene Therapy Regulatory Risk Analysis and Management Viral Reference Materials Viral Vectors

From a regulatory standpoint, vaccine stability must be demonstrated, along with the prediction of stability during temperature excursions, before a vaccine can be approved for use in humans.

In this work, Abdala subunit vaccine thermostability was studied under thermal stress conditions (2–8°C [control], 25°C, 37°C, 45°C, and 60°C) for 15 days. Molecular integrity of the vaccine active pharmaceutical ingredient was monitored by SDS-PAGE, immunoblotting, RP-HPLC, mass spectrometry, and circular dichroism spectroscopy analysis. While functionality was monitored by immunogenicity assay, inhibition of binding between receptor-binding domain (RBD) and receptor, angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), and RBD/ACE2 binding assay.

Results showed that no degradation, loss of disulfide bridges, nor modifications of secondary structure of the RBD molecule were detected at 25°C and 37°C. Moreover, high titers (1:48,853-1:427,849) of anti-RBD-specific mouse antibodies were detected with the ability to inhibit, to different degrees, the binding between RBD/ACE2.

In conclusion, the Abdala subunit vaccine is stable under thermal stress and storage conditions, which has an advantage over non-subunit vaccines previously approved or currently in development against COVID-19. The demonstrated high stability of this vaccine is a key factor in ensuring vaccine effectiveness, extending immunization coverage with fewer production runs, simplifying immunization logistics, and reducing cold chain-associated costs.

Biologics Production Regulatory

Tissue-derived products are a class of biological materials harvested directly from animal or human tissue, in contrast to recombinant DNA materials grown in cell culture bioreactors. Tissue-derived products are often used for structural purposes and are typically regulated as medical devices. However, when used to treat human patients, tissue-derived products are subject to many of the same concerns as recombinant DNA biotherapeutics, with viral safety being one of them. To address this, the tissue source material must undergo a risk analysis and testing regimen for the presence of viral contaminants. In addition, viral clearance studies must be performed to evaluate whether the purification process is robust enough to remove and/or inactivate viruses that may be present in the starting material.

The goals of viral clearance studies are the same for tissue-derived products and biotherapeutics, but the design and performance of these studies can be quite different because of the diverse nature of the materials. In this article, we will present an overview of viral clearance studies for tissue-derived products based on our experience in performing a large number of such studies. Rather than discussing the issues related to viral clearance in general, our focus will be on the unique challenges that tissue-derived products pose.

Biologics Production Regulatory Risk Analysis and Management

With an ever-increasing number of countries involved in the collection, processing and marketing of serum, it is necessary to understand the relevance and rules relating to geographic region of origin. This article reviews and discusses the safety and quality of FBS, rules of origin, consumer market-motivated misinformation, and how mislabeled serum can be detected. The article concludes that high-quality serum needed for scientific research and biopharmaceutical products can originate from any country, as long as it is collected, imported, and processed following all the applicable regulatory and industry requirements…

Biologics Production Regulatory

Since its inception in 2006, the International Serum Industry Association (ISIA) has been focused on providing a more informative characterization standard for animal sera. A fundamental aspect of this effort has been the development of a program focused on product traceability from abattoir to end-user. This goal has been achieved in part by implementing the ISIA-sponsored audit program. Serum vendors determined to be compliant with all audit requirements are awarded ISIA Traceability Certifications. In conjunction with Oritain Global Ltd, ISIA has developed and implemented a method for establishing geographical origin of serum products. The method and its capability of determining geographical origin are described in this paper…

Regulatory

This is the sixth and last in a series of articles describing and demystifying the processes involved in the gamma irradiation of serum. This serum treatment is intended to mitigate the risk of introducing adventitious contaminants into cell cultures. In this article, we discuss the regulatory environment under which gamma irradiation of serum is performed, and provide additional details on best practices for documentation of the irradiation process, selection of the contract irradiator, evaluation of risk versus benefit needed to arrive at the radiation dose range to be used, as well as an understanding of the level of remaining risk following irradiation at that dose range. Gamma irradiation should not be viewed as a means of totally eliminating risk, but rather as a means of reducing the risk of introducing adventitious agents into cell cultures. A balance must be achieved between the desire to eliminate all adventitious contaminants, and the need to retain the desired performance characteristics of the serum, once irradiated…

Regulatory Risk Analysis and Management

This article examines two interrelated animal welfare topics: the transportation of pregnant cattle, and the collection of fetal bovine serum (FBS). The occurrence of pregnant cattle at slaughter is unavoidable because of health, management, and economic reasons, or because farmers may be unaware of their pregnancy status. Since cattle are often sold to slaughterhouses through intermediaries, the pregnancy status of the cow is usually unknown until after it has been slaughtered and the uterus exposed. In slaughterhouses where fetal blood is collected, technicians are responsible for the detection and proper handling of fetuses, making sure they remain inside the uterus until dead, or are immediately euthanized. The harvesting of fetal blood also provides a possible source of information, which upon request, may help farmers improve the management of their livestock operations. The serum industry endorses the animal welfare standards set forth by the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), as well as all existing local and national standards relating to the transportation of pregnant cattle and the collection of fetal blood. This article concludes that there is nothing negative or unethical about collecting blood from a dead fetus. Rather it would be unethical not to utilize available fetal tissues obtained from the slaughter of pregnant cattle, especially since FBS, used as an ingredient in cell culture media, contributes greatly to the advancement of the life sciences industry, as well as the replacement and reduction of live animals used in research and testing…

Regulatory Research

Medicago manufactures influenza vaccine virus-like particles (VLPs) in an unusual production platform consisting of Nicotiana benthamiana plants. During the in vitro adventitious agent test (AAT) of certain Medicago B strain influenza vaccine VLP test samples, positive hemagglutination of guinea pig red blood cells was observed on day 14, but not on day 28. The positive result in the assay was surprising because the production process uses no animal-derived raw materials and contains a viral inactivation step. Plant-associated viruses would not be expected to infect the mammalian cell-based assay. No cytopathic effects or hemadsorption of red blood cells was observed in these AATs. The positive hemagglutination was observed at 2–8°C, but not at 36–38 °C, and only in a few of the six detector cell lines used in the assay. Because this is quite an unusual pattern of responses for an AAT, Medicago and the contract testing lab, Eurofins Lancaster Laboratories (ELLI) investigated the positive responses thoroughly for the presence of an adventitious agent or an alternative explanation not involving a viral contaminant. Investigation results indicated that the hemagglutinating activity associated with the vaccine test sample itself was responsible for the positive hemagglutination response. The positive hemagglutination on day 14 of these AATs was deemed an assay artifact, and preventive actions were taken to prevent recurrence of this type of false positive response…

Biologics Production Regulatory Risk Analysis and Management

The current draft of ICH Q12 appears to have taken several steps backward in the pursuit of the manufacturing excellence initiated by ICH Q8 (R2) pharmaceutical development and expanded by FDA’s 2011 process validation guidelines…

Manufacturing Regulatory