Understanding pharmaceutical quality by design. Academic Article uri icon


  • This review further clarifies the concept of pharmaceutical quality by design (QbD) and describes its objectives. QbD elements include the following: (1) a quality target product profile (QTPP) that identifies the critical quality attributes (CQAs) of the drug product; (2) product design and understanding including identification of critical material attributes (CMAs); (3) process design and understanding including identification of critical process parameters (CPPs), linking CMAs and CPPs to CQAs; (4) a control strategy that includes specifications for the drug substance(s), excipient(s), and drug product as well as controls for each step of the manufacturing process; and (5) process capability and continual improvement. QbD tools and studies include prior knowledge, risk assessment, mechanistic models, design of experiments (DoE) and data analysis, and process analytical technology (PAT). As the pharmaceutical industry moves toward the implementation of pharmaceutical QbD, a common terminology, understanding of concepts and expectations are necessary. This understanding will facilitate better communication between those involved in risk-based drug development and drug application review.

published proceedings

  • AAPS J

altmetric score

  • 17.25

author list (cited authors)

  • Yu, L. X., Amidon, G., Khan, M. A., Hoag, S. W., Polli, J., Raju, G. K., & Woodcock, J.

citation count

  • 675

complete list of authors

  • Yu, Lawrence X||Amidon, Gregory||Khan, Mansoor A||Hoag, Stephen W||Polli, James||Raju, GK||Woodcock, Janet

publication date

  • July 2014