312.315 Intermediate-size patient populations.§ 312.315 Intermediate-size patient populations.
Under this section, FDA may permit an investigational drug to be used for the treatment of a patient population smaller than that typical of a treatment IND or treatment protocol. FDA may ask a sponsor to consolidate expanded access under this section when the agency has received a significant number of requests for individual patient expanded access to an investigational drug for the same use.
(a) Need for expanded access. Expanded access under this section may be needed in the following situations:
(1) Drug not being developed. The drug is not being developed, for example, because the disease or condition is so rare that the sponsor is unable to recruit patients for a clinical trial.
(2) Drug being developed. The drug is being studied in a clinical trial, but patients requesting the drug for expanded access use are unable to participate in the trial. For example, patients may not be able to participate in the trial because they have a different disease or stage of disease than the one being studied or otherwise do not meet the enrollment criteria, because enrollment in the trial is closed, or because the trial site is not geographically accessible.
(3) Approved or related drug. (i) The drug is an approved drug product that is no longer marketed for safety reasons or is unavailable through marketing due to failure to meet the conditions of the approved application, or
(ii) The drug contains the same active moiety as an approved drug product that is unavailable through marketing due to failure to meet the conditions of the approved application or a drug shortage.
(b) Criteria. The criteria in § 312.305(a) must be met; and FDA must determine that:
(1) There is enough evidence that the drug is safe at the dose and duration proposed for expanded access use to justify a clinical trial of the drug in the approximate number of patients expected to receive the drug under expanded access; and
(2) There is at least preliminary clinical evidence of effectiveness of the drug, or of a plausible pharmacologic effect of the drug to make expanded access use a reasonable therapeutic option in the anticipated patient population.
(c) Submission. The expanded access submission must include information adequate to satisfy FDA that the criteria in § 312.305(a) and paragraph (b) of this section have been met. The expanded access submission must meet the requirements of § 312.305(b). In addition:
(1) The expanded access submission must state whether the drug is being developed or is not being developed and describe the patient population to be treated.
(2) If the drug is not being actively developed, the sponsor must explain why the drug cannot currently be developed for the expanded access use and under what circumstances the drug could be developed.
(3) If the drug is being studied in a clinical trial, the sponsor must explain why the patients to be treated cannot be enrolled in the clinical trial and under what circumstances the sponsor would conduct a clinical trial in these patients.
(d) Safeguards. (1) Upon review of the IND annual report, FDA will determine whether it is appropriate for the expanded access to continue under this section.
(i) If the drug is not being actively developed or if the expanded access use is not being developed (but another use is being developed), FDA will consider whether it is possible to conduct a clinical study of the expanded access use.
(ii) If the drug is being actively developed, FDA will consider whether providing the investigational drug for expanded access use is interfering with the clinical development of the drug.
(iii) As the number of patients enrolled increases, FDA may ask the sponsor to submit an IND or protocol for the use under § 312.320.
(2) The sponsor is responsible for monitoring the expanded access protocol to ensure that licensed physicians comply with the protocol and the regulations applicable to investigators.