Yes, CGMP regulations do require these written procedures. specifies that appropriate written procedures be established and followed to prevent growth of objectionable microorganisms in drug products not required to be sterile. Even though a drug product is not sterile, a firm must follow written procedures that proactively prevent introduction and proliferation of objectionable microorganisms. states that “there shall be appropriate laboratory testing, as necessary, of each batch of drug product required to be free of objectionable microorganisms” before it is released for distribution.
The meaning of the term objectionable needs to be evaluated on a case-by-case basis by each drug manufacturer. The primary meaning relates to microbial contaminants that, based on microbial species, numbers of organisms, dosage form, intended use, patient population, and route of administration, would adversely affect product safety. Microorganisms may be objectionable for several reasons; for example, they:
- Are a known human pathogen
- Adversely affect product stability
- React with, or potentially damage the integrity of, the container closure system (for example, fermentation that creates gaseous
- pressures sufficient to rupture a product container/closure)
- Interfere with analytical methods or active ingredient bioavailability.
Establishing production time limits is an example of a control to prevent growth of objectionable microorganisms. time limits for the completion of each phase of production, when appropriate, must be established and followed. For example, if a firm finds it necessary to hold a bulk topical or liquid product for several months until it is filled, the firm might establish a holding time limit to help prevent objectionable microbial buildup. Validation and control over microbial content of purified water systems used in certain topical products are also examples of such procedures.