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HHS/FDA RIN: 0910-AC52 Publication ID: Fall 2007 
Title: Electronic Submission of Data From Studies Evaluating Human Drugs and Biologics 
Abstract: The Food and Drug Administration is proposing to amend the regulations governing the format in which clinical study data and bioequivalence data are required to be submitted for new drug applications (NDAs), biological license applications (BLAs), and abbreviated new drug applications (ANDAs). The proposal would revise our regulations to require that data submitted for NDAs, BLAs, and ANDAs, and their supplements and amendments, be provided in an electronic format that FDA can process, review, and archive. The proposal would also require that FDA periodically issue guidance on the use of standardized data structure, terminology, and code sets (e.g., the Study Data Tabulation Model (SDTM) developed by the Clinical Data Interchange Standards Consortium) to allow for more efficient and comprehensive data review. 
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services(HHS)  Priority: Other Significant 
RIN Status: Previously published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Proposed Rule Stage 
Major: Undetermined  Unfunded Mandates: No 
CFR Citation: 21 CFR 314.50    21 CFR 601.12    21 CFR 314.94    21 CFR 314.96   
Legal Authority: 21 USC 355    21 USC 371    42 USC 262   
Legal Deadline:  None

Statement of Need: Before a drug is approved for marketing, FDA must determine that the drug is safe and effective for its intended use. This determination is based in part on clinical study data and bioequivalence data that are submitted as part of the marketing application. Study data submitted to FDA in electronic format have generally been more efficient to process and review. FDAs proposed rule would require the submission of study data in a standardized electronic format, and it provides that the specific format will be announced in FDA guidance. Electronic submission of study data would improve patient safety and enhance health care delivery by enabling FDA to process, review, and archive data more efficiently. Standardization would also enhance the ability to share study data and communicate results. Investigators and industry would benefit from the use of standards throughout the lifecycle of a study--in data collection, reporting, and analysis. The proposal would work in concert with ongoing agency and national initiatives to support increased use of electronic technology as a means to improve patient safety and enhance health care delivery.

Summary of the Legal Basis: Our legal authority to amend our regulations governing the submission and format of clinical study data and bioequivalence data for human drugs and biologics derives from sections 505 and 701 of the act (U.S.C. 355 and 371) and section 351 of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 262).

Alternatives: FDA considered issuing a guidance document outlining the electronic submission and the standardization of study data, but not requiring electronic submission of the data in the standardized format. This alternative was rejected because the agency would not fully benefit from standardization until it became the industry standard, which could take up to 20 years. We also considered a number of different implementation scenarios, from shorter to longer time-periods. The 2-year time-period was selected because the agency believes it would provide ample time for applicants to comply without too long a delay in the effective date. A longer time-period would delay the benefit from the increased efficiencies, such as standardization of review tools across applications, and the incremental cost savings to industry would be small.

Anticipated Costs and Benefits: Standardization of clinical data structure, terminology, and code sets will increase the efficiency of the agency review process. FDA estimates that the costs to industry resulting from the proposal would include some one-time costs and possibly some annual recurring costs. One-time costs would include, among other things, the cost of converting data to standard structures, terminology, and cost sets (i.e., purchase of software to convert data); the cost of submitting electronic data (i.e., purchase of file transfer programs); and the cost of installing and validating the software and training personnel. Additional annual recurring costs may result from software purchases and licensing agreements for use of proprietary terminologies. The proposal could result in many long-term benefits for industry, including improved patient safety through faster, more efficient, comprehensive, and accurate data review, as well as enhanced communication among sponsors and clinicians.

Risks: None.

Action Date FR Cite
NPRM  09/00/2008    
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: Yes  Government Levels Affected: None 
Small Entities Affected: Businesses  Federalism: No 
Included in the Regulatory Plan: Yes 
RIN Data Printed in the FR: Yes 
Agency Contact:
Martha Nguyen
Senior Regulatory Counsel
Department of Health and Human Services
Food and Drug Administration
Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, WO 51, Room 6250, 10903 New Hampshire Avenue,
Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002
Phone:301 796-3601
Fax:301 847-8440

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