Clinical and Regulatory Approval of COVID-19 Vaccine

BIOENGR 715.01

This 2-hour webinar will cover all phases of required clinicals and the regulatory requirement by FDA to introduce a new vaccine such as one for the COVID-19 to market.


What you can learn.

  • Understand the clinical requirements for a new vaccine
  • Gain insights into the regulatory requirements for approval of a new vaccine by the FDA
  • Identify the three phases of clinical trials for a new vaccine

About this course:

This course will provide an overview of the clinical requirements and the FDA approval process for getting a new vaccine for COVID-19 approved.  FDA's Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research (CBER) is responsible for regulating vaccines in the United States. Vaccine clinical development follows the same process as for drugs and other biologics. The clinical trials for a new vaccine begins with a submission of an Investigational New Drug application (IND) to FDA. The IND describes the vaccine, its method of manufacture, and quality control tests for release. The clinical trials for a new vaccine are done in three phases, as is the case for any drug or biologic. Initial human studies, referred to as Phase 1, are safety and immunogenicity studies performed in a small number of closely monitored subjects. Phase 2 studies are dose-ranging studies and may enroll hundreds of subjects. Finally, Phase 3 trials typically enroll thousands of individuals and provide the critical documentation of effectiveness and important additional safety data required for licensing. At any stage of the clinical or animal studies, if data raise significant concerns about either safety or effectiveness, FDA may request additional information or studies, or may halt ongoing clinical studies. The completion of all three phases of clinical development is followed by the submission of a Biologics License Application (BLA). To be considered, the license application must provide the FDA reviewer team (medical officers, microbiologists, chemists, biostatisticians, etc.) with the efficacy and safety information necessary to make a risk/benefit assessment and to recommend or oppose the approval of a vaccine. Also during this stage, the proposed manufacturing facility undergoes a pre-approval inspection during which production of the vaccine as it is in progress is examined in detail. The FDA continues to oversee the production of vaccines after the vaccine and the manufacturing processes are approved, in order to ensure continuing safety. Until a vaccine is given to the general population, all potential adverse events cannot be anticipated. Thus, many vaccines undergo Phase 4 studies-formal studies on a vaccine once it is on the market.

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