The Industry Committee of the Tissue Engineering Regenerative Medicine International Society, Americas Chapter (TERMIS-AM) administered a survey to its membership in 2013 to assess the awareness of science requirements in the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulatory process. One hundred forty-four members responded to the survey. Their occupational and geographical representation was representative of the TERMIS-AM membership as a whole. The survey elicited basic demographic information, the degree to which members were involved in tissue engineering technology development, and their plans for future involvement in such development. The survey then assessed the awareness of general FDA scientific practices as well as specific science requirements for regulatory submissions to the Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research (CBER), the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER), the Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH), and the Office of Combination Projects (OCP). The FDA-specific questions in the survey were culled from guidance documents posted on the FDA web site (www.fda.gov). One of the answer options was an opt-out clause that enabled survey respondents to claim a lack of sufficient awareness of the topic to answer the question. This enabled the stratification of respondents on the basis of confidence in the topic. Results indicate that across all occupational groups (academic, business, and government) that are represented in the TERMIS-AM membership, the awareness of FDA science requirements varies markedly. Those who performed best were for-profit company employees, consultants, and government employees; while students, professors, and respondents from outside the USA performed least well. Confidence in question topics was associated with increased correctness in responses across all groups, though the association between confidence and the ability to answer correctly was poorest among students and professors. Though 80% of respondents claimed involvement in the development of a tissue engineering technology, their responses were no more correct than those who were not. Among those developing tissue engineering technologies, few are taking advantage of existing standards organizations to strengthen their regulatory submissions. The data suggest that early exposure to regulatory experts would be of value for those seeking to bring their technology to the market. For all groups studied but especially for students and professors, formal initial or continuing education in Regulatory Science should be considered to best support translational tissue engineering research and development. In addition, the involvement of standards development organizations during tissue engineering technology development is strongly recommended.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biomedical Engineering