Use of mechanistic simulations as a quantitative risk-ranking tool within the quality by design framework


E. Stocker, G. Toschkoff, J. G. Khinast, S. Sacher




International Journal of Pharmaceutics



The purpose of this study is to evaluate the use of computer simulations for generating quantitative knowledge as a basis for risk ranking and mechanistic process understanding, as required by ICH Q9 on quality risk management systems. In this specific publication, the main focus is the demonstration of a risk assessment workflow, including a computer simulation for the generation of mechanistic understanding of active tablet coating in a pan coater. Process parameter screening studies are statistically planned under consideration of impacts on a potentially critical quality attribute, i.e., coating mass uniformity. Based on computer simulation data the process failure mode and effects analysis of the risk factors is performed. This results in a quantitative criticality assessment of process parameters and the risk priority evaluation of failure modes. The factor for a quantitative reassessment of the criticality and risk priority is the coefficient of variation, which represents the coating mass uniformity. The major conclusion drawn from this work is a successful demonstration of the integration of computer simulation in the risk management workflow leading to an objective and quantitative risk assessment.


Computational simulation, Discrete element method, ICH Q9 quality risk management, Process understanding, Quality by Design, Tablet coating

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