The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently released a draft guidance for industry titled ``Drug Products, Including Biological Products, that Contain Nanomaterials.'' The FDA's attention to the unique safety and efficacy aspects of drugs containing nanomaterials is commendable. This Draft Guidance succeeds in acknowledging the complexity of these products, as well as the challenges associated with approving safe and therapeutically equivalent complex generic versions. However, the challenge posed by the manufacturing process for drugs containing nanomaterials is insufficiently addressed. The critical quality attributes of such products cannot be properly defined, and therefore it is not possible to design informative comparative physicochemical assessments for equivalence. As a consequence, the 505(j) Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDA) pathway, currently advised as the standard from the FDA, is not suitable for the approval of complex generic products. Drawing from the successful story of biologics, we propose instead a stepwise totality-of-evidence approach, demonstrating similarity and including clinical studies when deemed necessary, as an appropriate alternative to the 505(j) ANDA pathway.
Emily, M., Ioanna, N., Scott, B., & Beat, F. (2018). Reflections on FDA Draft Guidance for Products Containing Nanomaterials: Is the Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDA) a Suitable Pathway for Nanomedicines? The AAPS Journal, 20(5). https://doi.org/10.1208/s12248-018-0255-0