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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

CFR - Code of Federal Regulations Title 21

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Help | More About 21CFR
[Code of Federal Regulations]
[Title 21, Volume 7]
[Revised as of April 1, 2014]
[CITE: 21CFR601.12]



TITLE 21--FOOD AND DRUGS
CHAPTER I--FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
SUBCHAPTER F--BIOLOGICS

PART 601 -- LICENSING

Subpart C--Biologics Licensing

Sec. 601.12 Changes to an approved application.

(a) General . (1) As provided by this section, an applicant must inform the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) (see mailing addresses in 600.2 of this chapter) about each change in the product, production process, quality controls, equipment, facilities, responsible personnel, or labeling established in the approved license application(s).

(2) Before distributing a product made using a change, an applicant must assess the effects of the change and demonstrate through appropriate validation and/or other clinical and/or nonclinical laboratory studies the lack of adverse effect of the change on the identity, strength, quality, purity, or potency of the product as they may relate to the safety or effectiveness of the product.

(3) Notwithstanding the requirements of paragraphs (b), (c), and (f) of this section, an applicant must make a change provided for in those paragraphs in accordance with a regulation or guidance that provides for a less burdensome notification of the change (for example, by submission of a supplement that does not require approval prior to distribution of the product or in an annual report).

(4) The applicant must promptly revise all promotional labeling and advertising to make it consistent with any labeling change implemented in accordance with paragraphs (f)(1) and (f)(2) of this section.

(5) A supplement or annual report must include a list of all changes contained in the supplement or annual report. For supplements, this list must be provided in the cover letter.

(b) Changes requiring supplement submission and approval prior to distribution of the product made using the change (major changes). (1) A supplement shall be submitted for any change in the product, production process, quality controls, equipment, facilities, or responsible personnel that has a substantial potential to have an adverse effect on the identity, strength, quality, purity, or potency of the product as they may relate to the safety or effectiveness of the product.

(2) These changes include, but are not limited to:

(i) Except as provided in paragraphs (c) and (d) of this section, changes in the qualitative or quantitative formulation, including inactive ingredients, or in the specifications provided in the approved application;

(ii) Changes requiring completion of an appropriate human study to demonstrate the equivalence of the identity, strength, quality, purity, or potency of the product as they may relate to the safety or effectiveness of the product;

(iii) Changes in the virus or adventitious agent removal or inactivation method(s);

(iv) Changes in the source material or cell line;

(v) Establishment of a new master cell bank or seed; and

(vi) Changes which may affect product sterility assurance, such as changes in product or component sterilization method(s), or an addition, deletion, or substitution of steps in an aseptic processing operation.

(3) The applicant must obtain approval of the supplement from FDA prior to distribution of the product made using the change. Except for submissions under paragraph (e) of this section, the following shall be contained in the supplement:

(i) A detailed description of the proposed change;

(ii) The product(s) involved;

(iii) The manufacturing site(s) or area(s) affected;

(iv) A description of the methods used and studies performed to evaluate the effect of the change on the identity, strength, quality, purity, or potency of the product as they may relate to the safety or effectiveness of the product;

(v) The data derived from such studies;

(vi) Relevant validation protocols and data; and

(vii) A reference list of relevant standard operating procedures (SOP's).

(4) An applicant may ask FDA to expedite its review of a supplement for public health reasons or if a delay in making the change described in it would impose an extraordinary hardship on the applicant. Such a supplement and its mailing cover should be plainly marked: "Prior Approval Supplement-Expedited Review Requested.

(c) Changes requiring supplement submission at least 30 days prior to distribution of the product made using the change. (1) A supplement shall be submitted for any change in the product, production process, quality controls, equipment, facilities, or responsible personnel that has a moderate potential to have an adverse effect on the identity, strength, quality, purity, or potency of the product as they may relate to the safety or effectiveness of the product. The supplement shall be labeled "Supplement--Changes Being Effected in 30 Days" or, if applicable under paragraph (c)(5) of this section, "Supplement--Changes Being Effected."

(2) These changes include, but are not limited to:

(i) [Reserved]

(ii) An increase or decrease in production scale during finishing steps that involves different equipment; and

(iii) Replacement of equipment with that of similar, but not identical, design and operating principle that does not affect the process methodology or process operating parameters.

(iv) Relaxation of an acceptance criterion or deletion of a test to comply with an official compendium that is consistent with FDA statutory and regulatory requirements.

(3) Pending approval of the supplement by FDA, and except as provided in paragraph (c)(5) of this section, distribution of the product made using the change may begin not less than 30 days after receipt of the supplement by FDA. The information listed in paragraph (b)(3)(i) through (b)(3)(vii) of this section shall be contained in the supplement.

(4) If within 30 days following FDA's receipt of the supplement, FDA informs the applicant that either:

(i) The change requires approval prior to distribution of the product in accordance with paragraph (b) of this section; or

(ii) Any of the information required under paragraph (c)(3) of this section is missing; the applicant shall not distribute the product made using the change until FDA determines that compliance with this section is achieved.

(5) In certain circumstances, FDA may determine that, based on experience with a particular type of change, the supplement for such change is usually complete and provides the proper information, and on particular assurances that the proposed change has been appropriately submitted, the product made using the change may be distributed immediately upon receipt of the supplement by FDA. These circumstances may include substantial similarity with a type of change regularly involving a "Supplement--Changes Being Effected" supplement or a situation in which the applicant presents evidence that the proposed change has been validated in accordance with an approved protocol for such change under paragraph (e) of this section.

(6) If the agency disapproves the supplemental application, it may order the manufacturer to cease distribution of the products made with the manufacturing change.

(d) Changes to be described in an annual report (minor changes). (1) Changes in the product, production process, quality controls, equipment, facilities, or responsible personnel that have a minimal potential to have an adverse effect on the identity, strength, quality, purity, or potency of the product as they may relate to the safety or effectiveness of the product shall be documented by the applicant in an annual report submitted each year within 60 days of the anniversary date of approval of the application. The Director, Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research or the Director, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, may approve a written request for an alternative date to combine annual reports for multiple approved applications into a single annual report submission.

(2) These changes include, but are not limited to:

(i) Any change made to comply with a change to an official compendium, except a change described in paragraph (c)(2)(iv) of this section, that is consistent with FDA statutory and regulatory requirements.

(ii) The deletion or reduction of an ingredient intended only to affect the color of the product, except that a change intended only to affect Blood Grouping Reagents requires supplement submission and approval prior to distribution of the product made using the change in accordance with the requirements set forth in paragraph (b) of this section;

(iii) An extension of an expiration dating period based upon full shelf life data on production batches obtained from a protocol approved in the application;

(iv) A change within the container closure system for a nonsterile product, based upon a showing of equivalency to the approved system under a protocol approved in the application or published in an official compendium;

(v) A change in the size and/or shape of a container containing the same number of dosage units for a nonsterile solid dosage form product, without a change from one container closure system to another;

(vi) The addition by embossing, debossing, or engraving of a code imprint to a solid dosage form biological product other than a modified release dosage form, or a minor change in an existing code imprint; and

(vii) The addition or revision of an alternative analytical procedure that provides the same or increased assurance of the identity, strength, quality, purity, or potency of the material being tested as the analytical procedure described in the approved application, or deletion of an alternative analytical procedure.

(3) The following information for each change shall be contained in the annual report:

(i) A list of all products involved; and

(ii) A full description of the manufacturing and controls changes including: the manufacturing site(s) or area(s) involved; the date the change was made; a cross-reference to relevant validation protocols and/or SOP's; and relevant data from studies and tests performed to evaluate the effect of the change on the identity, strength, quality, purity, or potency of the product as they may relate to the safety or effectiveness of the product.

(iii) A statement by the holder of the approved application or license that the effects of the change have been assessed.

(4) The applicant shall submit the report to the FDA office responsible for reviewing the application. The report shall include all the information required under this paragraph for each change made during the annual reporting interval which ends on the anniversary date in the order in which they were implemented.

(e) An applicant may submit one or more protocols describing the specific tests and validation studies and acceptable limits to be achieved to demonstrate the lack of adverse effect for specified types of manufacturing changes on the identity, strength, quality, purity, or potency of the product as they may relate to the safety or effectiveness of the product. Any such protocols, or change to a protocol, shall be submitted as a supplement requiring approval from FDA prior to distribution of the product which, if approved, may justify a reduced reporting category for the particular change because the use of the protocol for that type of change reduces the potential risk of an adverse effect.

(f) Labeling changes. (1) Labeling changes requiring supplement submission--FDA approval must be obtained before distribution of the product with the labeling change. Except as described in paragraphs (f)(2) and (f)(3) of this section, an applicant shall submit a supplement describing a proposed change in the package insert, package label, container label, or, if applicable, a Medication Guide required under part 208 of this chapter, and include the information necessary to support the proposed change. An applicant cannot use paragraph (f)(2) of this section to make any change to the information required in 201.57(a) of this chapter. An applicant may report the minor changes to the information specified in paragraph (f)(3)(i)(D) of this section in an annual report. The supplement shall clearly highlight the proposed change in the labeling. The applicant shall obtain approval from FDA prior to distribution of the product with the labeling change.

(2) Labeling changes requiring supplement submission--product with a labeling change that may be distributed before FDA approval . (i) An applicant shall submit, at the time such change is made, a supplement for any change in the package insert, package label, or container label to reflect newly acquired information, except for changes to the package insert required in 201.57(a) of this chapter (which must be made under paragraph (f)(1) of this section), to accomplish any of the following:

(A) To add or strengthen a contraindication, warning, precaution, or adverse reaction for which the evidence of a causal association satisfies the standard for inclusion in the labeling under 201.57(c) of this chapter;

(B) To add or strengthen a statement about abuse, dependence, psychological effect, or overdosage;

(C) To add or strengthen an instruction about dosage and administration that is intended to increase the safety of the use of the product; and

(D) To delete false, misleading, or unsupported indications for use or claims for effectiveness.

(E) Any labeling change normally requiring a supplement submission and approval prior to distribution of the product that FDA specifically requests be submitted under this provision.

(ii) Pending approval of the supplement by FDA, the applicant may distribute a product with a package insert, package label, or container label bearing such change at the time the supplement is submitted. The supplement shall clearly identify the change being made and include necessary supporting data. The supplement and its mailing cover shall be plainly marked: "Special Labeling Supplement--Changes Being Effected."

(3) Labeling changes requiring submission in an annual report. (i) An applicant shall submit any final printed package insert, package label, container label, or Medication Guide required under part 208 of this chapter incorporating the following changes in an annual report submitted to FDA each year as provided in paragraph (d)(1) of this section:

(A) Editorial or similar minor changes;

(B) A change in the information on how the product is supplied that does not involve a change in the dosage strength or dosage form;

(C) A change in the information specified in 208.20(b)(8)(iii) and (b)(8)(iv) of this chapter for a Medication Guide; and

(D) A change to the information required in 201.57(a) of this chapter as follows:

(1 ) Removal of a listed section(s) specified in 201.57(a)(5) of this chapter; and

(2 ) Changes to the most recent revision date of the labeling as specified in 201.57(a)(15) of this chapter.

(E) A change made pursuant to an exception or alternative granted under 201.26 or 610.68 of this chapter.

(ii) The applicant may distribute a product with a package insert, package label, or container label bearing such change at the time the change is made.

(4) Advertisements and promotional labeling . Advertisements and promotional labeling shall be submitted to the Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research or Center for Drug Evaluation and Research in accordance with the requirements set forth in 314.81(b)(3)(i) of this chapter, except that Form FDA-2567 (Transmittal of Labels and Circulars) or an equivalent form shall be used.

(5) The submission and grant of a written request for an exception or alternative under 201.26 or 610.68 of this chapter satisfies the requirements in paragraphs (f)(1) through (f)(2) of this section.

(6) For purposes of paragraph (f)(2) of this section, information will be considered newly acquired if it consists of data, analyses, or other information not previously submitted to the agency, which may include (but are not limited to) data derived from new clinical studies, reports of adverse events, or new analyses of previously submitted data (e.g., meta-analyses) if the studies, events or analyses reveal risks of a different type or greater severity or frequency than previously included in submissions to FDA.

(g) Failure to comply. In addition to other remedies available in law and regulations, in the event of repeated failure of the applicant to comply with this section, FDA may require that the applicant submit a supplement for any proposed change and obtain approval of the supplement by FDA prior to distribution of the product made using the change.

(h) Administrative review. Under 10.75 of this chapter, an applicant may request internal FDA review of FDA employee decisions under this section.

[62 FR 39901, July 24, 1997, as amended at 63 FR 66399, Dec. 1, 1998. Redesignated at 65 FR 59718, Oct. 6, 2000, and amended at 69 FR 18766, Apr. 8, 2004; 70 FR 14983, Mar. 24, 2005; 71 FR 3997, Jan. 24, 2006; 72 FR 73600, Dec. 28, 2007; 73 FR 49609, Aug. 22, 2008; 73 FR 68333, Nov. 18, 2008]

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