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Open access

Adrijana Martinac, Siniša Tomić and Mirna Šimičić

New European Commission Regulation on Variations to the Terms of Marketing Authorisation for Medicinal Products and its Impact on Croatian Legislation

Variations introduced to medicinal product documentation must not affect the quality, efficacy, and safety of the product. Croatian Medicinal Products Act and accompanying ordinances are largely aligned with the EU regulations. The EU has now tried to simplify the issue of variations with a new Regulation, creating differences in the definition of and approach to resolving certain types of variations between Croatia and the EU. These differences could hinder the approval procedure for variations in Croatia, particularly for medicines already approved in the EU. Amending the Croatian Ordinance on medicines already authorised in the EU would be one way of maintaining the efficiency of the Croatian regulatory system.

Open access

Siniša Tomić, Anita Sučić and Adrijana Martinac

Good Manufacturing Practice: The Role of Local Manufacturers and Competent Authorities

In every country, a manufacturer of medicinal products for either human or veterinary use is required to operate in compliance with local legislation. In all EU Member States, legislation is approximated to the effect that they are committed to abide by the same standards. The candidate countries transpose the acquis into their national legislation, including the good manufacturing practice (GMP). Consequently, the local manufacturer is required to strictly comply with GMP and the manufacturing licence, including for medicinal products exclusively intended for export. A vital role is also played by national regulatory authorities, in Croatia by the Agency for Medicinal Products and Medical Devices which issues the manufacturing licence, GMP certificate, and the Certificate of a Pharmaceutical Product (CPP) and conducts laboratory control of products. GMP inspection is carried out by the Pharmaceutical Inspectorate with the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare. Both authorities are responsible only for human medicines. There are legislative issues not yet harmonised with the acquis, but as a country aspiring for the EU membership, Croatia is expected to demonstrate that its industry and competent authorities are able to conform to current requirements and thus fully adhere to the integrated European regulatory network. Hence the importance of strengthening the institutional capacity of the competent authorities, as insufficient resources may have a direct bearing on patients by limiting their access to affordable treatment.

Open access

Ivan Kosalec, Josipa Cvek and Siniša Tomić

Contaminants of Medicinal Herbs and Herbal Products

Medicinal plants have a long history of use in therapy throughout the world and still make an important part of traditional medicine. Thus, medicinal plants and herbal products must be safe for the patient (consumer). This review addresses biological contaminants (microbes and other organisms) and chemical contaminants (mycotoxins, toxic elements such as heavy metals, and pesticide residues) as major common contaminants of medicinal herbs and herbal products. To prevent and screen for contamination and ensure safety and conformity to quality standards, medicinal herbs and herbal products should be included in appropriate regulatory framework.

Open access

Tamara Nazor, Marta Kosanović and Siniša Tomić

Quality Control of Seasonal Influenza Vaccines

The purpose of seasonal influenza vaccination is to prevent its spread. The vaccines contain strains of the influenza virus recommended and approved for a particular season. Just like any other medicinal product, all vaccines require marketing approval. Batches of approved vaccines are extensively tested by the manufacturers and additionally controlled by the approving authorities, which issue the quality control certificates. This article not only to describes the legal background of quality control, but also how control test results obtained by a Croatian official control laboratory are compared to manufacturer's results. We have found that testing results can slightly differ depending on methods/analytical procedures used in different laboratories. This investigation has also shown how important it is to test finished medicinal products, independently of testing at intermediate stages, and how retesting by control authorities ensures that marketed vaccines meet quality standards.

Open access

Siniša Tomić, Neven Milčić, Milenko Sokolić and Adrijana Martinac

Identification of Counterfeit Medicines for Erectile Dysfunction from an Illegal Supply Chain

The appearance of counterfeit medicines in supply chains is a global public health problem that may seriously affect patients. Counterfeit drugs do not meet quality standards and do not declare their real composition and/or source for the purposes of fraud. They may be generic or innovative, they may contain genuine constituents in a fake packaging, or wrong ingredients, or inactive ingredients, or an incorrect quantity of the active substance. In Croatia, no cases of counterfeit medicines have been detected so far, but the Agency for Medicinal Products and Medical Devices has received 34 samples of medicines and other products for testing from Zagreb City Police. The samples included medicines for erectile dysfunction: sildenafil, tadalafil, and vardenafil. Twenty-three samples of tablets without marketing authorisation in Croatia were tested with high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) for the declared sildenafil and tadalafil content. Samples labelled 1 (batch T/33), 3 (batch T/33), 5 (batch 4), 6 (batch M0016J), 10 (batch T-070235), 12 (batch T-070544), 15 (batch 314833201), 16 (batch 832718474), and 17 (batch 504830028) containing sildenafil and samples labelled 20 (batch 070356), 21 (batch 05668), and 22 (batch T 378 5) containing tadalafil did not contain the active substance within the acceptable 95 % to 105 % margin of deviation from the declared content. While most samples cannot be described as fake with a reasonable amount of certainty, there is still a suspicion of counterfeit. A correct conclusion can be drawn only with the assistance of the manufacturers and by conducting additional laboratory tests.

Open access

Nataša Zorić, Nevenka Kopjar, Klara Kraljić, Nada Oršolić, Siniša Tomić and Ivan Kosalec

Abstract

Olive leaf extract is characterized by a high content of polyphenols (oleuropein, hydroxytyrosol and their derivatives), which is associated with its therapeutic properties. The objective of the present research was to evaluate the antifungal activity of olive leaf extract against Candida albicans ATCC 10231 and C. dubliniensis CBS 7987 strains. Minimum inhibitory concentrations (MIC) of the extract were determined by several in vitro assays. The extract showed a concentration depended effect on the viability of C. albicans with MIC value of 46.875 mg mL-1 and C. dubliniensis with MIC value 62.5 mg mL-1. Most sensitive methods for testing the antifungal effect of the extracts were the trypan blue exclusion method and fluorescent dye exclusion method while MIC could not be determined by the method according to the EUCAST recommendation suggesting that herbal preparations contain compounds that may interfere with this susceptibility testing. The fluorescent dye exclusion method was also used for the assessment of morphological changes in the nuclei of treated cells. According to the obtained results, olive leaf extract is less effective against the tested strains than hydroxytyrosol, an olive plant constituent tested in our previous study.