QA/QC

Biopharmaceutical Characterization, Part 2: Applications and Strategies for Diverse Products — A Conference Report

Last fall, KNect365 brought together more than 250 analytical specialists to discuss biological assays and characterization of well-characterized biologics in Rockville, MD. Speakers from the US Food and Drug Administration joined experts from leading biopharmaceutical companies, service providers, and consultancies for case studies, regulatory interactions, sharing perspectives, and learning about emerging technologies. Part 1 of this report in January 2019 focused on the bioassay section of the meeting. Here in Part 2 sponsored by Sartorius, BPI’s senior technical editor reports…

Analytical Challenges: Characterization of Oligonucleotide Therapeutics

Recent approvals of oligonucleotide therapeutics are a clear signal for optimism for this product class. This is supported by the strength of the current pipeline which has over 180 active oligonucleotide clinical programs in various phases of development. Improvements in analytical technology and know-how have played a key role in enabling suitable characterization and quality control strategies to overcome the difficulties associated with testing these complex molecules. Despite the lack of dedicated regulatory guidelines related to characterization or quality control,…

Analytical Tools to Improve Decision-Making During Product Development

Speed to clinic testing — and then speed to market — are highly significant metrics for companies developing biopharmaceuticals. By increasing the pace of drug development, these companies can reduce costs, obtain revenues early, and establish commanding positions in the market relative to their competitors. High-throughput development tools have contributed much to the acceleration of drug development in recent years. Such technologies enable the testing of many process parameters in parallel. Combining them with multifactorial “design of experiment” (DoE) analysis…

Analytical Strategies for Fixed-Dose Coformulated Protein Therapeutics

Coformulation of two or more proteins in a single formulation is an emerging approach to delivering multiple biotherapeutics that previously have been administered in sequence. This approach brings multiple benefits to all stakeholders. Foremost for patients, the primary benefits are combined therapeutic effects and improved convenience (e.g., fewer administration events). Healthcare providers see logistical benefits and decreased risk of medical errors. Additionally, coformulations also simplify manufacturing logistics, reduce costs of packaging and distribution, and provide new opportunities for product portfolio…

Recommended Practices for Assuring Integrity of Single-Use Systems

The increasing uptake of single-use technologies (SUTs) in critical current good manufacturing practice (CGMP) processes and applications has made their integrity a critical quality attribute (CQA) for both suppliers and end users of such systems. Current regulations focus on final packaging, however, without taking into account the unique aspects of assemblies used in bioproduction. Ongoing initiatives include revision of PDA TR 27 (1) and creation of A STM workstreams (2, 3) to propose good practices for the integrity of single-use…

Points to Consider in Quality Control Method Validation and Transfer

The concept of an analytical lifecycle has been well received in the biopharmaceutical industry. In 2016, the US Pharmacopeia (USP) advocated for lifecycle management of analytical procedures (1) and defined its three stages: method design development and understanding, qualification of the method procedure, and procedure performance verification. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has published guidance on process validation with a similar division into three stages: process design, process performance qualification, and process performance verification (2). For a manufacturing…

Qualitative and Quantitative Host Cell Protein Analysis Using Mass Spectrometry

Host cell proteins (HCPs) originate from host organisms that are used to produce biopharmaceutical products. They are in-process contaminants that must be minimized during downstream process operations. According to regulatory agencies, the maximum permitted level of total HCP in a biopharmaceutical product is 100 ng per mg (100 ppm) (1). HCPs can decrease drug efficacy and pose a risk to patient safety because they can bring on undesirable immune responses. Thus, HCPs are a critical quality attribute that should be…

The Complete e-Book of Biosafety Testing

Expect the expected. But plan for the unexpected. If your Biosafety Development takes a nose dive, Eurofins Lancaster Laboratories’ team of regulatory experts and experienced scientists will help you land safely on two feet. Download The Complete e-Book of Biosafety Testing to learn more about our expertise in biologics raw materials, cell bank preparation, adventitious virus testing, viral clearance studies, next-generation sequencing, genetic stability testing, and more. This e-Book contains the following chapters: Mitigating Risk and Reducing Regulatory Scrutiny of…

A Novel 3D Culture System for High-Throughput Hepatoxicity Screening

Cells grown as three-dimensional (3D) spheroids are thought to more closely mimic in vivo physiology in terms of morphology, structural complexity, and phenotype. Being more physiologically relevant, 3D cultures can be highly predictive for compound profiling and evaluating cytotoxicity, a critical step in evaluating chemotherapeutic drug candidates. Unfortunately, evaluation of drug cytotoxicity traditionally has relied on the use of two-dimensional (2D) cell culture monolayers. When grown in monolayers, cells are not exposed to soluble gradients, are forced into an apical-basal…

Certain Approaches to Understanding Sources of Bioassay Variability

During lifecycle development of a biological assay (bioassay), identifying and reducing sources of variability might be required to improve method performance. Here I recommend some statistical and graphical approaches (consistent with USP <1033>) for practitioners to identify variation from experimental results (1). Sources of Variation in a Bioassay To correctly identify sources of variation in a bioassay, analysts must consider how that bioassay is to be executed. In particular, the experience and technical expertise of each analyst expected to execute…