Guideline on the European Drug Master File Procedure updated

The "Guideline on Active Substance Master File Procedure" which was developed by EMA's Quality Woring Party, describes the procedure that can be used to document an API's quality for a regulatory authority. This guideline was already revised several times since it was initially issued in 2006. The last update was published in October 2012. This 3rd revision was updated again now to "support the Working Group on Active Substance Master File Procedures in their initiatives to improve the ASMF procedure across the European Regulatory Network" as mentioned in the remarks on page 2 of the Guideline.

The Guideline comprises updates mainly referring to its Annexes:

  • Annex 1: In part 3.2.S.2.1 of the ASMF all sites where manufacturings steps (e.g. the manufacturing of intermediates, quality controls, in-process controls, milling and sterilisation processes) take place have to be indicated.
  • Annex 2: With this Letter of Access the API manufacturer (ASMF Holder) grants the authority insight into the ASMF's restricted part. According to the respective passage which was included in the letter template, the API manufacturer agrees that the authority exchanges the ASMF evaluation reports with the EDQM's certification department. 
  • Annex 3: This "Submission Letter and Administrative Details for documents relating to an ASMF" has to be submitted together with the ASMF as part of a new marketing authorisation application or a variation. The updated template of this letter comprises much more detailed requirements. For instance, the active substance (where applicable) has to be specified regarding its salt form, water content and grade.
  • Annex 4: Withdrawal of Access Letter. With this letter the ASMF Holder can withdraw the authorisation for the authority to use the ASMF (restricted part). The reasons for this can be the termination of API manufacture or the replacement of the ASMF procedure by the CEP procedure (CEP = Certificate of Suitability). This Annex is new.
  • The Annexes 5, 6 and 7 (previously Annexes 4 and 5) were modified only slightly. The glossary (Annex 7) includes references to the respective VICH GL39-Guideline which is based on ICH Q6A.

The Guideline text itself was adapted according to the updated Annexes.

Please see the "Guideline on Active Substance Master File Procedure"; CHMP/QWP/227/02 Rev 3/Corr" for more detailed information.

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