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Draft Guidance for Institutional Review Boards, Clinical Investigators, and Sponsors: IRB Continuing Review After Clinical Investigation Approval; Availability

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AGENCY:

Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is announcing the availability of a draft guidance entitled, “Guidance for IRBs, Clinical Investigators, and Sponsors: IRB Continuing Review After Clinical Investigation Approval.” The draft guidance announced in this notice is intended to assist institutional review boards (IRBs) in carrying out their continuing review responsibility by providing recommendations regarding the criteria, process, and frequency of continuing review to assure the protection of the rights and welfare of subjects in clinical investigations. The draft guidance should also help clinical investigators and sponsors better understand their responsibilities related to continuing review.

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DATES:

Although comments on any guidance can be submitted at any time (see 21 CFR 10.115(g)(5)), to ensure that the agency considers a comment on this draft guidance before it begins work on the final version of the guidance, written or electronic comments on the draft guidance should be submitted by March 15, 2010. Submit written comments on the draft guidance to the Division of Dockets Management (HFA-305), Food and Drug Administration, 5630 Fishers Lane, rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852. Submit electronic comments to http://www.regulations.gov. See the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section for electronic access to the draft guidance document.

ADDRESSES:

Submit written requests for single copies of this draft guidance to the Division of Drug Information, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER), Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., White Oak (WO) Bldg. 51, rm. 2201, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002 (1-888-463-6332 or 301-796-3400); or the Office of Communication, Outreach and Development (HFM-40), Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research (CBER), Food and Drug Administration, 1401 Rockville Pike, suite 200N, Rockville, MD 20852-1448 (1-800-835-4709 or 301-827-1800); or the Division of Small Manufacturers, International, and Consumer Assistance, Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH), Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave. (WO Bldg. 66, rm. 4622), Silver Spring, MD 20993 (1-800-638-2041 or 301-796-7100). Send one self-addressed adhesive label to assist the office in processing your requests.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Sara Goldkind, Office of Good Clinical Practice (HF-34), Food and Drug Administration, 5600 Fishers Lane, rm. 16-85, Rockville, MD 20857, 301-827-3340.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

FDA is announcing the availability of a draft guidance entitled, “Guidance for IRBs, Clinical Investigators, and Sponsors: IRB Continuing Review After Clinical Investigation Approval.” This guidance is intended to assist IRBs in carrying out their continuing review responsibility under 21 CFR 56.108(a) and 56.109(f) by providing recommendations regarding the criteria, process, and frequency of continuing review to assure the protection of the rights and welfare of subjects in clinical investigations. The draft guidance should also help clinical investigators and sponsors better understand their responsibilities related to continuing review. When finalized, this guidance will supersede the Information Sheet, “Continuing Review After Study Approval” (September 1998, Office of Health Affairs, Food and Drug Administration).

To enhance human subject protection and reduce regulatory burden, the Department of Health and Human Services, Office for Human Research Protections (OHRP) and FDA have been actively working to harmonize the agencies' regulatory requirements and guidance for human subject research. This draft guidance document was developed as part of these efforts.

FDA is issuing this as a draft guidance because it has been substantially revised in response to numerous questions about the continuing review process from the IRB and research communities. Changes include more detailed discussion about what should be submitted to assist the IRB in conducting continuing review, discussion of the circumstances in which expedited review procedures may be used for continuing review, and guidance about how continuing review dates should be determined.

This draft guidance is part of the Information Sheet Guidance Initiative, announced in the Federal Register of February 3, 2006 (71 FR 5861), which describes FDA's intention to update the process for developing, issuing, and making available guidances intended for IRBs, clinical investigators, and sponsors. Known as “Information Sheets,” these guidances have provided recommendations to IRBs, clinical investigators, and sponsors to help them fulfill their responsibilities to protect human subjects who participate in research regulated by the FDA. The Information Sheet Guidance Initiative is intended to ensure that the Information Sheets are updated, consistent with the FDA's good guidance practices (GGPs). As part of the initiative, which will be ongoing, the agency plans to rescind Information Sheets that are obsolete, revise and reissue guidances that address current issues, and develop new guidance documents as needed.

The draft guidance is being issued consistent with FDA's GGPs regulation (21 CFR 10.115). The draft guidance, when finalized, will represent FDA's current thinking on this topic. It does not create or confer any rights for or on any person and does not operate to bind FDA or the public. An alternative approach may be used if such approach satisfies the requirements of the applicable statutes and regulations.

II. The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

This draft guidance includes information collection provisions that are subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520) (PRA). The collections of information referenced in this guidance that are related to IRB recordkeeping requirements under 21 CFR 56.115, which include the requirements for records of continuing review, have been approved under OMB Control No. 0910-0130; the collections of information in part 312 (21 CFR part 312) have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0014; and the collections of information in part 812 (21 CFR part 812) have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0078. In accordance with the PRA, prior to publication of any final guidance document, FDA intends to solicit public comment, and obtain OMB approval for any information collections recommended in this guidance that are new or that would represent material modifications to these previously approved collections of information found in FDA regulations.

III. Comments

Interested persons may submit to the Division of Dockets Management (see ADDRESSES) written or electronic comments regarding this draft guidance. Submit a single copy of electronic comments or two paper copies of any mailed comments, except that individuals may submit one paper copy. Comments are to be identified with the docket number found in brackets in the heading of this document. Received comments may be seen in the Division of Dockets Management between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday.

IV. Electronic Access

Persons with access to the Internet may obtain the document at http://www.regulations.gov, or http://www.fda.gov/​ScienceResearch/​SpecialTopics/​RunningClinicalTrials/​ProposedRegulationsandDraftGuidances/​default.htm

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Dated: January 7, 2010.

David Dorsey,

Acting Deputy Commissioner for Policy, Planning and Budget.

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[FR Doc. 2010-426 Filed 1-12-10; 8:45 am]

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