risk assessment

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EHS: Environmental health and biosafety risk assessment framework for commercial scale cell and gene therapy manufacturing and template

This paper and supporting template identifies, shares and enhances best practices and standards, improves risk controls and increases the speed of learning. It discusses a general process designed to provide a risk assessment framework and contains a ready-to-use template. This highlights the complexity of commercial-scale manufacturing as well as considering the areas to assess, potential questions to ask while assessing them, and the other parties who may have pertinent input to the overall risk assessment.

The template can form the basis for discussions between a contract manufacturer and client, or between production and development departments. The aim is to address the following questions when evaluating the CGT manufacturing process: What could go wrong? What controls are in place and are they enough? What did we learn from this?

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How to assess EHS risks for commercial-scale CGT manufacture

The rapidly expanding field of cell and gene therapies (CGT) has the potential to revolutionize curative treatments. However, among the many hurdles ahead are that occupational health and safety guidelines for the manufacture of CGT products have been lacking and there is no clear framework for considering risks for operators when working at a commercial scale. The result is that there is no ‘universal’ biosafety risk assessment template for...

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Product changeovers (PCO): Biopharmaceutical industry position on European Medicines Agency (EMA) guidance and expectations at product changeovers

The EMA guidance, ‘Guideline on setting health-based exposure limits for use in risk identification in the manufacture of different medicinal products in shared facilities’ goes against current best practice for product changeovers (PCO) in the biomanufacturing industry, This paper is a response that sets out the currently accepted practices and controls in an evidence-based justification to help companies validate and continue working towards their implementation. The paper promotes: limited or no sampling at PCO, supported by cleaning validation, the use of alternative methods for calculating limits, eliminating the need for a health based exposure limit (HBEL) calculation, the necessary use of additional programs (e.g. eye-sight testing) and the generation of a robust risk assessment that align with industry practices.

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Particle classification: An industry-wide standardized methodology and risk classification tool for PC in biopharmaceutical parenteral products

All companies need to classify the risks various types of visible particles provide. This is not a simple task and without a well supported, scientific basis companies lay themselves open to regulatory challenges and sometimes have to commit to questionable controls. The proof of concept, developed by a large group of industry practitioners, allows companies to underpin their particle classification practices with a rational, risk-based approach. It will not change how companies classify visible particles, but will provide a framework to support their current classifications. The methodology assesses a range of patient risk factors, such as the route of administration, and applies a simple scoring system to calculate an overall risk score for a visible particle in a product or presentation. When challenged by regulators or internal QA teams, the methodology helps companies respond to demands to change particle classifications using an assessment of risk, which in turn may save batches from being destroyed if a classification is unnecessarily severe.

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Raw material: A holistic approach to raw material risk assessments through industrial collaboration

It is impossible to define the raw materials used in the biopharmaceutical industry with a single set of regulatory or compliance criteria. What is considered fit-for-function changes depending on the product attributes and the intended customer. This tool standardizes and structures the risk assessment process, addressing three fundamental questions when determining raw material fit-for-function: What user requirement is the raw material designated to perform? What material attributes are essential to the designated function and what might have unintended consequences? This paper helps improve communication between – and within – manufacturers and suppliers and enables users to make uniform, evidence-based decisions on risks and priorities concerning raw materials. An industry-wide methodology for the resolution of high-impact raw material variability issues.

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Environmental monitoring (EM): harmonized risk-based approach to selecting monitoring points and defining monitoring plans

Environmental monitoring (EM) is a fundamental control for the biopharmaceutical industry yet available guidance is quite general and open to significantly differing interpretation. This makes the full justification of sampling plans challenging in the face of regulatory scrutiny and it difficult for organizations to optimize and harmonize controls across plants and networks. Using the heightened requirements in and around grade A areas, a group of industry subject matter experts have written this highly detailed best practice guidance on EM risks assessments and sample location and method planning, to provide clarity on how to monitor and control our manufacturing environments. This is the first such detailed standard and will be the basis for consistent application of current best practice; thereby minimizing the risk of regulatory scrutiny and non-compliance, supporting business continuity while reducing unnecessary monitoring to a minimum

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Environmental monitoring (EM): Risk assessment template

This Excel spreadsheet tool compliments the guidance document ‘Environmental monitoring: harmonized risk-based approach to selecting monitoring points and defining monitoring plans’. This allows the user to assess a room against six factors, the amenability of equipment and surfaces to cleaning and sanitization, personnel presence and flow, material flow, proximity to open product or exposed direct product contact material, the need for interventions/operations and their complexity, frequency of intervention and score them

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Host cell protein (HCP): Risk assessment tool and papers

Host cell protein (HCP) constitutes a significant class of process-related impurities in biological drugs. The complexity and diversity of residual HCP composition in biologics and the incomplete understanding of their potential impact also pose unknown risks besides some of the well-known risks from certain problematic HCPs. This can make the HCP risk assessment and management an industry-wide challenge.

Although attempts have been made to address these challenges in the biopharmaceutical industry, gaps still remain in terms of how to manage the risks associated with HCP during bioprocess development. To this end, a BioPhorum Development Group (BPDG) HCP working team consisting of several companies initiated a collaboration among its members to align industry best practices and generated a generic risk assessment tool to manage HCP-related risks identified during biologics development from both an assay development and process development perspective.

Distinct from individual HCP identity-based safety risk assessment, this tool focuses on the manufacturing process through process development. The tool will help companies to tackle the risks associated with HCP within the development lifecycle. The intent the tool is to provide a template in order to guide process development teams using a scientific knowledge-based risk control strategy, where process or assay changes may be deemed necessary to reduce the risks caused by inadequate removal of HCP upon experimental studies to assess impact of HCPs on product safety, efficacy, and stability.

Companies implementing this risk management model can apply their own unique set of circumstances, products and experience to perform a more comprehensive and robust assessment of risk, identify the priority in which risk reduction steps should be applied.

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Host cell protein (HCP): A multi-company collaboration: Views on “high risk” HCP: Presentation

This presentation compliments the papers and risk manage tool. The goal of the Host Cell Protein (HCP) Workstream is to deliver for industry alignment; building a common understanding of agency requirements for HCPs through benchmarking and gap analysis of guidance. To widen understanding of the risks associated with HCPs and what can be done to mitigate these risks during process development. This poster available to ‘Members Only’ discusses, Industry benchmarking, understanding of what companies are doing in order to understand HCP risk through the stages of development, risk assessment methodology and risk scoring tool to perform qualitative and semi-quantitative assessment of risk when dealing with HCPs, case studies and next steps.

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