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Posts Tagged ‘Medical Devices’


Monday, May 19th, 2014

Fundamentals of Endotoxin Testing for Medical Device Manufacturers are Detailed in New Technical Brief

AGAWAM, MASS. — May 19, 2014 — The fundamentals of endotoxin testing for medical device manufacturers — from definition to assay acceptance criteria —are detailed in new technical brief available from Microtest Laboratories.

Bacterial endotoxins cause fever, septic shock, and other disease symptoms — and thus attract considerable regulatory scrutiny from such organizations as the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) and the United States Pharmacopeial Convention. Regulations require that devices that contact circulating blood or cerebrospinal fluid, or are used with intraocular products or in vitro fertilization procedures, are required to be endotoxin-free.

The Fundamentals of Endotoxin Testing,” available for download at http://microtestlabs.com/endotoxin-testing, is a step-by-step information resource for medical device manufacturers discussing and detailing the:

  • Definition of endotoxins;
  • Various tests used for their detection;
  • Use of depyrogenation and other ways to remove endotoxins;
  • Types of devices that should be tested;
  • Preparation and testing of samples;
  • Options for sampling containers;
  • Acceptance criteria for each of the assays; and
  • Sources of official information, reference, and guidance.

The Fundamentals of Endotoxin Testing” is authored by Steven Richter, Ph.D., said Steven Richter, Ph.D., president and scientific director of Microtest Laboratories — and a former FDA official.

Download the brief from: http://microtestlabs.com/endotoxin-testing.

The paper is one in a series about testing, manufacturing, and regulatory issues of concern for medical device manufacturers from Microtest Laboratories, a leader in testing services and contract manufacturing for medical devices, pharmaceuticals, and biotechnology.

About Microtest Laboratories

Microtest Laboratories is a leader in testing services and contract manufacturing for medical devices, pharmaceuticals, and biotechnology. It was founded in 1984. The company’s expertise and flexible processes enhance product safety and security, speed time to market, and minimize supply chain disruption. Microtest’s unique single-source capability to provide testing and manufacturing solutions allows the firm to support a full pharmaceutical or medical device product release. The company’s facilities in Agawam, Massachusetts, USA include state-of-the-art aseptic manufacturing areas; analytical chemistry, microbiological, and virological laboratories; Class 100 clean rooms; onsite steam and ethylene oxide sterilization, plus depyrogenation capabilities; purified water systems; and voice/data systems. For more information, visit http://www.microtestlabs.com or call 1-413-786-1680 or toll-free 1-800-631-1680. Follow Microtest Laboratories on Twitter @MicrotestLabs on Facebook at http://goo.gl/TndoBg.


Monday, May 12th, 2014

Disinfectant Qualifications in Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Environments is Focus of White Paper

AGAWAM, MASS. – May 12, 2014 – A white paper outlining the six steps that pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers must employ to qualify disinfectants used in their environmental cleaning processes is available from Microtest Laboratories. It is available for download from http://microtestlabs.com/6stepspaper-disinfectant-qualification.

“Sterile pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturing environments require an effective cleaning and disinfection program to maintain aseptic conditions and prevent the microbial contamination of the product. The qualification of the chemical disinfectants used in these environments is extremely important, yet it is often overlooked,” stated Deborah Ensign, supervisor, R&D of Microtest Laboratories, in the new white paper, “Six Steps to Qualifying Disinfectants.”

In fact, “disinfectant qualifications require more planning, time, and resources than many companies realize,” she said.

“Any time a new disinfectant is introduced into the cleaning process within the facility, a qualification should be performed. From start to finish, a disinfectant qualification can require from 2 to 12 months.

“The timeline for a disinfectant qualification will depend on a number of variables, including the number of disinfectants and challenge organisms being tested as well as the number of surfaces (for the coupon method) being evaluated,” Ensign noted.

“The bottom line is that no matter whether the disinfectant qualification is performed internally — or by an outside testing laboratory — these six steps must be addressed,” she warned.

Download a free copy of the white paper, “Six Steps to Qualifying Disinfectants” for pharmaceutical manufacturing companies from http://microtestlabs.com/6stepspaper-disinfectant-qualification.

Deborah Ensign is supervisor, R&D Lab, at Microtest Laboratories Inc. She has over 20 years of experience in regulatory microbiology and contract laboratory operations. Ms. Ensign supervises Microtest’s Specialized Microbiology department. She holds a bachelor of arts degree in microbiology and is a nationally registered microbiologist. Ms. Ensign oversees all reusable testing (cleaning, disinfecting, and sterilization) and serves as a resource for USP testing, specifically <51>, <61>, and <62>.

About Microtest Laboratories

Microtest is a leader in testing services and contract manufacturing for the medical device, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology industries. Based in Agawam, Massachusetts, U.S.A., the company’s expertise and flexible processes enhance product safety and security, accelerate time to market, and minimize supply chain disruption. For more information, visit http://www.microtestlabs.com or call 1-413-786-1680 or toll-free 1-800-631-1680.


Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

Webinar Exploring “What’s the Risk? Fearing the Failure in Environmental Monitoring Systems” is Offered for Life Science Companies

AGAWAM, MASS. — March 11, 2014 — A webinar to help life science companies explore the importance of a well-implemented and understood environmental monitoring program, and its ability to generate valuable data, will be offered on Wednesday, March 26, from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. EST. The online event will identify the common mistakes and misconceptions regularly encountered when managers “fear the failure” of environmental excursions.

Environmental monitoring systems demonstrate that a company’s various contamination control strategies are operating properly. Such systems can illustrate whether operations are in a state of control. Variations in the data can indicate a drift which could potentially impact product and patient safety.

But the data generated by environmental monitoring system may become skewed when a culture is created which fears environmental failures or excursions. The webinar, What’s the Risk? Fearing the Failure in Environmental Monitoring Systems,” will detail how key life science company management can work to avoid such cultures.

Webinar topics — tailored for quality assurance and control, manufacturing, microbiology, and facilities management in pharmaceutical, biotech, and medical device organizations — will include:

  • The big picture: what systems need to be monitored and why the data is valuable
  • Risk-based environmental monitoring program implementation
  • Culture and “buy-in:” how to create a culture of employee acceptance for contamination control programs
  • Responding to data: how to identify trends in the data and respond with appropriate actions

The webinar will be offered Wednesday, March 26, 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. EST. Featured speakers include Valerie Montgomery, environmental services manager, and Alison Zulick, environmental services leader, both of Microtest Laboratories, a leading provider of testing services and contract manufacturing for the life science industries.

To register or for more information about the webinar, What’s the Risk? Fearing the Failure in Environmental Monitoring Systems,” visit http://www.microrite.com/training/environmental-monitoring-systems-fearing-the-failure.

About Microtest Laboratories

Microtest Laboratories is a leader in testing services and contract manufacturing for the medical device, pharmaceutical, and compounding pharmacy industries. Based in Agawam, Massachusetts, USA, Microtest leverages its 30 years industry experience to help its clients meet their regulatory requirements.  For more information, visit http://www.microtestlabs.com or toll-free 1-800-631-1680.

 

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Press contact: Don Goncalves, 1-781-793-9380, dgoncalves@tizinc.com


Tuesday, January 14th, 2014

Fundamentals of Endotoxin Testing for Medical Device Manufacturers are Detailed in New Technical Brief

AGAWAM, MASS. — January 14, 2014 — The fundamentals of endotoxin testing for medical device manufacturers — from definition to assay acceptance criteria —are detailed in new technical brief available from Microtest Laboratories.

Bacterial endotoxins cause fever, septic shock, and other disease symptoms — and thus attract considerable regulatory scrutiny from such organizations as the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) and the United States Pharmacopeial Convention. Regulations require that devices that contact circulating blood or cerebrospinal fluid, or are used with intraocular products or in vitro fertilization procedures, are required to be endotoxin-free.

The Fundamentals of Endotoxin Testing,” available for download at http://microtestlabs.com/endotoxin-testing, is a step-by-step information resource for medical device manufacturers discussing and detailing the:

  • Definition of endotoxins;
  • Various tests used for their detection;
  • Use of depyrogenation and other ways to remove endotoxins;
  • Types of devices that should be tested;
  • Preparation and testing of samples;
  • Options for sampling containers;
  • Acceptance criteria for each of the assays; and
  • Sources of official information, reference, and guidance.

The Fundamentals of Endotoxin Testing” is authored by Steven Richter, Ph.D., said Steven Richter, Ph.D., president and scientific director of Microtest Laboratories — and a former FDA official.

Download the brief from: http://microtestlabs.com/endotoxin-testing.

The paper is one in a series about testing, manufacturing, and regulatory issues of concern for medical device manufacturers from Microtest Laboratories, a leader in testing services and contract manufacturing for medical devices, pharmaceuticals, and biotechnology.

About Microtest Laboratories

Microtest Laboratories is a leader in testing services and contract manufacturing for medical devices, pharmaceuticals, and biotechnology. It was founded in 1984. The company’s expertise and flexible processes enhance product safety and security, speed time to market, and minimize supply chain disruption. Microtest’s unique single-source capability to provide testing and manufacturing solutions allows the firm to support a full pharmaceutical or medical device product release. The company’s facilities in Agawam, Massachusetts, USA include state-of-the-art aseptic manufacturing areas; analytical chemistry, microbiological, and virological laboratories; Class 100 clean rooms; onsite steam and ethylene oxide sterilization, plus depyrogenation capabilities; purified water systems; and voice/data systems. For more information, visit http://www.microtestlabs.com or call 1-413-786-1680 or toll-free 1-800-631-1680. Follow Microtest Laboratories on Twitter @MicrotestLabs on Facebook at http://goo.gl/TndoBg.

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Tuesday, November 12th, 2013

Current Regulatory Expectations Affecting the Validation of Reusable Medical Devices is Subject of Dec. 4th Seminar in Boston

AGAWAM, MASS. — November 12, 2013 — A half-day seminar focusing on current regulatory expectations in the validation of reusable medical devices is the subject of a seminar set for Dec. 4th in Waltham, Mass., near Boston.

The validation of reusable medical devices is at the forefront of the FDA’s efforts to ensure patient safety. Requirements for the cleaning, disinfection, and sterilization of reusable devices are constantly changing. The situation challenges manufacturers both in terms of deciding which testing methods to employ as well as the planning of end points.

The seminar will provide attendees with the knowledge they need to know about current regulatory expectations so they may better prepare their submissions for FDA acceptance — and avoid the time-consuming and costly requirements of additional testing.

Seminar topics will include:

  • Discussion of the FDA’s draft guidance for industry and FDA staff, “Processing/ Preprocessing Medical Devices in Healthcare Settings”
  • Methods used for the cleaning and validation of reusable devices
  • Methods for the disinfection of reusable devices
  • Methods for the sterilization of reusable devices
  • Testing requirements
  • Detailed discussion of endpoints for cleaning validation

The seminar will be presented by Microtest Laboratories, a leader in testing services and contract manufacturing for the medical device, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology industries, on Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2013, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Conference Center at Waltham Woods in Waltham, Mass., just outside Boston. Registration is at 9 a.m. A continental breakfast, break refreshments, and a luncheon are included.

To register, visit http://goo.gl/DvaECn or contact Julie Adamski 1-800-631-1680, ext. 192, or jadamski@microtestlabs.com. Advance registration is $149.

About Microtest Laboratories

Microtest Laboratories is a leader in testing services and contract manufacturing for the medical device, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology industries. Based in Agawam, Massachusetts, USA, the company provides expertise and flexible processes that enhance product safety and security, accelerate time to market, and minimize supply chain disruption. For more information, visit http://www.microtestlabs.com or call 1-413-786-1680 or toll-free 1-800-631-1680. Follow Microtest Laboratories on Facebook at http://facebook.com/MicrotestLaboratories, on LinkedIn at http://goo.gl/H8ZLnM or on Twitter @MicrotestLabs.


Tuesday, October 22nd, 2013

Use of Stability Studies in Drug, Combination Products & Medical Device Development are Reviewed in New Whitepaper

AGAWAM, MASS. — October 22, 2013 —The use of stability testing in new product development — of drug substances, drug products, combination products and some medical devices — is reviewed in a new whitepaper from Microtest Laboratories, a leader in testing services and contract manufacturing for the medical device, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology industries.

The paper, “The Use of Stability Studies in Pharmaceutical and Combination Product Development” (download from: http://microtestlabs.com/stability-studies), outlines how stability studies can be used to gather valuable information about a new product and prevent unnecessary manufacturing costs and time delays.

Stability studies can help determine formulation and manufacturing strategy, analytical assay development and validation — and help explain unexpected and failing results. They can also provide input to manufacturing controls, and help identify final packaging requirements. The paper examines three specialized stability studies as examples:

  • Forced degradation studies, which involve exposing the product to predetermined stress conditions in order to intentionally form likely degradation products;
  • Photostability testing, used to determine the product’s ability to withstand exposure to light without any adverse effects;
  • Temperature cycling studies, used to assess the impact of temperature changes on the product.

Two case studies, one involving a drug product and one a combination product, are also presented.

The use of stability studies in the development of new drug or combination products can ease both the planning and execution of a development strategy. Moreover, the studies may also help prevent unnecessary costs and time delays due to poor formulations, assay failures, and manufacturing problems.

Download the new whitepaper, “The Use of Stability Studies in Pharmaceutical and Combination Product Development,” from: http://microtestlabs.com/stability-studies.

About Microtest Laboratories

Microtest Laboratories is a leader in testing services and contract manufacturing for the medical device, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology industries. Based in Agawam, Massachusetts, USA, the company provides expertise and flexible processes that enhance product safety and security, accelerate time to market, and minimize supply chain disruption. For more information, visit http://microtestlabs.com or call 1-413-786-1680 or toll-free 1-800-631-1680.


Tuesday, September 10th, 2013

New FDA Regulations Streamlining the Governance of Combination Products are Detailed in New White Paper

AGAWAM, MASS. — September 10, 2013 — New Federal Food & Drug Administration (FDA) regulations have streamlined the governance of combination products — medical devices embedded with pharmaceutical or biologic components. A new white paper titled “Combination Products 3.0: Applying the New FDA Regulations in 2013” discusses the implications for manufacturers. The whitepaper is available to download at http://microtestlabs.com/combination-products-30.

Combination products are a large and growing segment of the medical device market. Some analysts estimate they represent over 30% of all new FDA product submissions.

“Over the last 10 years, FDA regulatory centers have struggled with the changes and challenges that these new technologies present. For manufacturers, the convergence of drugs, biologics, and devices has created both a host of regulatory issues — and many exciting opportunities,” according to Steven Richter, Ph.D, President and Chief Scientific Officer of Microtest Laboratories, Inc., and author of the new white paper.

The new FDA publication, “21 CFR Part 4 — Current Good Manufacturing Practice Requirements for Combination Products,” revises regulations by establishing different categories of products. These included single-entity products (such as a drug-eluting stent) and co-packaged products (such as a packaged syringe and pharmaceutical). The rules also distinguished between a drug with a device, a biologic with a device, and a device with an HCT/P.

 

The new white paper discusses, in detail and example, how the new FDA rules guide a manufacturer into one of two approaches, depending upon the characteristics of their product.

 

According to Dr. Richter, “the FDA’s new streamlined approach for regulating combination products is a big step forward for the practitioner. It applies parts of both the QSR and GMP quality systems in a way that makes sense for the unique characteristics of each combination product. 21 CFR Part 4 closes the gaps in the 2004 guidelines and succinctly clarifies the process for establishing quality systems that ensure compliance and patient health and safety.”

Download the new white paper, “Combination Products 3.0: Applying the New FDA Regulations in 2013,” from http://microtestlabs.com/combination-products-30. The white paper is presented by Microtest Laboratories, a leader in testing services and contract manufacturing for the medical device, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology industries.

Based in Agawam, Mass., the company provides expertise and flexible processes that enhance product safety and security, accelerate time to market, and minimize supply chain disruption. For more information about Microtest Laboratories, visit microtestlabs.com or call 1-413-786-1680 or toll-free 1-800-631-1680. Follow Microtest Laboratories on Twitter @MicrotestLabs at http://twitter.com/MicrotestLabs.


Tuesday, September 3rd, 2013

New Medical Device Polymer Biocompatibility Screening Test Using Zebrafish Embryos to be Discussed at AMI’s Medical Grade Polymers 2013

AGAWAM, MASS. – September 3, 2013 – A new test that utilizes Zebrafish (Danio rerio) embryos to screen plastics, composites, and polymers for toxicity in medical device manufacturing will be featured at AMI’s Medical Grade Polymers 2013 technical conference in September.

“The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires testing to assess medical device toxicology and describes which situations may trigger the need for manufacturers to repeat testing or undertake new programs. The dynamics of such testing are rapidly evolving,” according to Steven Richter, Ph.D., president and scientific director of Microtest Laboratories, and a former FDA official.

Dr. Richter developed the new “ZET™ Medical Device Polymer Biocompatibility Screen Test,” at Microtest Laboratories for use by medical device manufacturers and bio-material researchers.

 

“Zebrafish are extensively used in drug development studies due to their transparent embryos and fast development times. The Zebrafish test demonstrates similarities to mammalian models and humans. Its unique approach to fast-track medical device toxicity screens will save manufacturers time and reduce expenses,” he said.

 

“Moreover, Microtest’s ZET Test sensitivity has proven to be greater than the USP gold standard test for BPA. In addition, the benefits of ZET surpass both USP cytotoxicity testing and mouse embryo toxicity tests,” he said.

 

Dr. Richter will present details of the new ZET Test in his presentation, “Biocompatibility Testing: Past, Present, and Future,” on Tuesday, Sept. 17, at 10:10 a.m., at the Applied Market Information LLC (AMI) Medical Grade Polymers 2013 conference. The conference runs Sept. 17-18, at the Crowne Plaza, Boston/Woburn, Mass. For more information, visit http://goo.gl/o9edjx.

For more information about Microtest Laboratories’ new ZET Test, download the white paper, New Medical Device Polymer Biocompatibility Screening Test Using Zebrafish Embryos (Danio Rerio),from http://www.microtestlabs.com/zebrafish-test-paper.

About Microtest Laboratories

Microtest Laboratories is a leader in testing services and contract manufacturing for the medical device, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology industries. Based in Agawam, Massachusetts, U.S.A., the company provides expertise and flexible processes that enhance product safety and security, accelerate time to market, and minimize supply chain disruption. For more information, visit http://www.microtestlabs.com or call 1-413-786-1680 or toll-free 1-800-631-1680.


Tuesday, August 13th, 2013

Microtest Labs Helps Manufacturers of Reusable Medical Devices Meet FDA Cleaning Validation Requirements

AGAWAM, MASS. — August 13, 2013 — Microtest Laboratories is employing new state-of-the-art technology to assist manufacturers of reusable medical devices ensure that they meet U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requirements for cleaning validations.

Many manufacturers of reusable medical devices only create a set of instructions on manual washing — although automatic washing is gaining popularity. But the FDA requires that manufacturers validate that all sets of cleaning instructions and meet the parameters indicated on a reusable medical device’s labeling.

Microtest Labs acquired a new Getinge 46 series automatic washer/disinfector — used to reprocess soiled reusable medical devices so they can be used again for subsequent procedures. The washer removes soil and performs a low level disinfection of reusable medical devices — thus removing the variability of manual reprocessing.

Technicians at Microtest Lab will use the new system to expand and supplement their consulting services with manufacturers. “By working with manufacturers to develop and validate a set of autowashing parameters, we are helping to ensure that their devices will be processed faster and more reproducible. This saves time and costs — and helps reduce the future possibility of a soiled device being used by a healthcare professional,” said Philip Nosel of Microtest Labs.

Based on its expertise, the company has recently published a management brief summarizing the FDA’s requirements for automatic washing cleaning validation and discussing the benefits of automatic washing. The brief, “Automatic Washer Validation for Medical Device: Are you in compliance?,” is available for download at http://microtestlabs.com/automatic-washer-validation.

For more information, call Microtest Laboratories 1-413-786-1680 or toll-free 1-800-631-1680.

About Microtest Laboratories

Microtest Laboratories is a leader in testing services and contract manufacturing for the medical device, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology industries. Based in Agawam, Massachusetts, USA, the company provides expertise and flexible processes that enhance product safety and security, accelerate time to market, and minimize supply chain disruption. For more information, visit http://www.microtestlabs.com or call 1-413-786-1680 or toll-free at 1-800-631-1680. Follow Microtest Laboratories on Twitter @MicrotestLabs at http://twitter.com/MicrotestLabs.


Wednesday, October 24th, 2012

New White Paper Assists Medical Device Manufacturers with Changes to FDA Endotoxin Testing Guidelines

AGAWAM, MASS. —October 24, 2012 — A new white paper is available to assist medical device manufacturers with understanding recent changes to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) thinking regarding endotoxin testing. The paper is available to download from the Web at http://www.microtestlabs.com/medical-device-endotoxin-testing-paper.

Titled “FDA Updates Medical Device Endotoxin Testing Program (New Guidance),” the new white paper is authored by Steven G. Richter, Ph.D., a former FDA official, and President and Chief Scientific Officer of Microtest Laboratories, Inc., a leading contract testing laboratory.

In the paper, Dr. Richter discusses the FDA’s recently published document, “Guidance of Industry Pyrogen and Endotoxin Testing: Questions and Answers.” The FDA document replaced the agency’s 1987 Endotoxin Guidelines — now considered out of date as a result of changes in the USP and pharmaceutical dosage forms. It presents the agency’s current position regarding pyrogen and bacterial endotoxin testing requirements for pharmaceuticals, biologics, and medical devices. Medical devices that contact circulating blood or cerebrospinal fluid, or are used with intraocular products or in vitro fertilization procedures, are required to be endotoxin-free.

In his new white paper, Dr. Richter reviews the FDA’s updated guidelines on endotoxin testing and explains how they relate to medical devices. Since the majority of pyrogens found on medical devices are bacterial in nature, the paper focuses on those contaminates.

Some medical devices that are required by the FDA to be tested for endotoxin are:

  • Intravenous catheters and tubing
  • Cardiac stents and angioplasty balloons
  • Certain implants such as pacemakers/defibrillators
  • Spinal catheters
  • Transfusion catheters
  • Intraocular lens implants
  • Cranial drills
  • Perfusion tubing
  • Dialysis tubing and filters
  • Vascular grafts
  • In vitro fertilization catheters

Download a copy of the new white paper, “FDA Updates Medical Device Endotoxin Testing Program (New Guidance),” from the Microtest Laboratories website at http://www.microtestlabs.com/medical-device-endotoxin-testing-paper. Or, request a copy by calling 1-413-786-1680 or toll-free 1-800-631-1680.

About Microtest Laboratories

Microtest Laboratories is a full-service medical device testing laboratory and provider of related services for the medical device, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology industries. Medical device testing is performed in-house by seasoned regulatory microbiologists and chemists under strict GMP/GLP regulations. Microtest is both ISO 9000 and 17025 certified. Testing services include bioburden, sterility, endotoxin, accelerated aging, and toxicity (ISO 10993). In addition, Microtest recently introduced a fast-track test to screen plastics and polymers in medical devices for toxicity using Zebrafish embryos.

Based in Agawam, Massachusetts, USA, the company provides expertise and flexible processes that enhance product safety and security, accelerate time to market, and minimize supply chain disruption. For more information, visit http://www.microtestlabs.com, or call 1-413-786-1680 or toll-free 1-800-631-1680. Follow on Twitter at http://twitter.com/MicrotestLabs.

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