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Updated guideline on the use of epoetin and darbepoetin in cancer patients

Patients undergoing chemotherapy for cancer can often become anaemic as their red blood cell counts, and hence iron levels, fall. Besides the traditional approach of offering blood transfusion in order to restore iron levels, physicians can now treat patients with drugs that stimulate red blood cell development – known as erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESAs). Both treatments can boost iron-containing haemoglobin (Hb) levels, but they also pose risks to the patients. With transfusions, patients are at risk from serious infections and immune-mediated adverse events, while with ESAs; there is an increased risk of thromboembolism and death from other (but poorly understood) causes [1].

FDA increases number of biological suffix proposals

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has announced a slight change to its guidance on naming biologicals, which will allow companies to propose up to 10 suffixes for each new biological or biosimilar. The agency announced the change in a Federal Register notice released on 2 June 2016.

EMA releases reflection paper for generic oral immediate release products

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) announced on 13 May 2016 the publication of draft guidance on the dissolution requirements for orally administered generics with immediate release characteristics.

FDA issues guidance on data integrity and GMP

The recent flood of data integrity problems identified at the manufacturing sites of drugmakers from India, China and elsewhere has led the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to draft new guidance addressing the issue.

FDA issues draft guidance on biosimilars labelling

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced on 31 March 2016 that it had issued draft guidance for industry on labelling for biosimilars. The guidance is open for comment for a period of two months.

India releases revised guidelines for ‘similar biologics’

On 26 March 2016, India’s Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) announced the release of proposed revised guidance for ‘similar biologics’ in India.

EMA publishes guidance on publication of clinical trials data

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) announced on 3 March 2016 the publication of detailed guidance on the requirements for pharmaceutical companies to comply with the agency’s policy on publication of clinical trials data for medicines.

BSG guidance recommends switching to biosimilar infliximab

The British Society of Gastroenterology (BSG) released new guidance in February 2016 recommending that stable patients be switched to biosimilar infliximab (CT-P13).

FDA releases 47 new and revised bioequivalence guidelines for generics

Generics makers have a whole host of new bioequivalence documents to go through. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced on 27 January 2016 that it had released 35 new draft guidance documents and 12 revisions to guidance documents on bioequivalence requirements for the development of generics containing 42 different active ingredients.

FDA finalizes guidance for biosimilars meetings

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced on 18 November 2015 that it had finalized its guidance for industry on formal meetings between the FDA and biosimilars sponsors.