RDD 2016 In Review

Respiratory Drug Delivery® returned to the Westin Kierland Resort and Spa in Scottsdale, Arizona from April 17 through April 21, 2016. As it has for more than 25 years, RDD brought together experts from the pharmaceutical industry, academia and government agencies to discuss emerging science associated with inhaled drug delivery. Joseph DiPiro the Dean of the School of Pharmacy at Virginia Commonwealth University introduced the conference and welcomed over 600 participants, representing 30 countries. Just over half (55%) came from the USA and Canada, 35% from Europe and the remaining 10% from the ‘rest of the world’ including India, China, Australia and New Zealand, and South America. Approximately 82% of attendees reported working for pharmaceutical companies or their suppliers while the remaining 18% were from academia and regulatory authorities.

Charles G. Thiel Award

Charles Thiel AwardRDD 2016 recognized innovators in the field, old and young. The conference organizers were honored to present the 2016 Charles G. Thiel Award to Dr. Warren Finlay, of the University of Alberta who is best known for his work developing the Alberta Idealized Throat. Charlie Thiel was in attendance to present the award in person. Endowed at VCU by 3M Drug Delivery Systems, the Thiel award recognizes outstanding research and discovery in respiratory drug delivery.

Peter R. Byron Travel Award

Peter Byron AwardThe organizers of RDD and VCU also paid homage to the next generation of scientists, with the inaugural VCU RDD Peter R. Byron Graduate Student Award (the "Pete"), which was awarded to Mr. Matthias van Woensel, of the University of Leuwen, Belgium, for the presentation and defense of his research, Development of siRNA-loaded Chitosan Nanoparticles targeting Galectin-1 for the Treatment of Glioblastoma Multiforme via Intranasal Administration. All graduate students who had a poster abstract accepted for the conference and attended RDD 2016 were eligible to receive the award which covers the student's registration fee, travel expenses and accommodation up to a maximum of $2,000. The next award will be made at RDD Europe 2017 - and the deadline for Scientific Poster abstracts is January 6 2017


Plenary SpeakerDr. Daniela Riccardi, Professor, School of Bioscience, University of Cardiff, delivered the plenary lecture, entitled Inhaled Calcilytics: Effects on Airway Inflammation and Remodeling which described the potential for inhaled CaSR antagonists to interrupt both airway hyperresponsiveness and inflammation. Other speakers offered their insights discussing new drug and product development, MDI and DPI theory and practice, drug deposition, engineering and controlling surface properties, and nasal corticosteroid spray characteristics. Connected devices were a prominent theme at this years conference with a podium presentation by David van Sickle, Propeller Health on the topic Connected Devices to Monitor Inhaler Use in the Real World  as well as various offerings presented in the Technology Exhibition. “Posters on the Podium” highlighted the latest research in pulmonary and nasal delivery presented in the Scientific Poster Session and included presentations by both graduate students as well as industrial perspectives.

Tuesday morning opened with back-to-back sessions offered by the conference Platinum Sponsors. 3M Drug Delivery Systems shared historical perspectives on inhaler development including anecodotes of the original MDI development from Charlie Thiel but also looked to the future with their Intelligent Control Inhaler. Aptar Pharma provided practical insights into how different technologies and innovations can be transferred among inhalation, nasal and injectable platforms while AstraZeneca / Pearl Therapeutics looked to the scientific foundation and application of their MDI co-suspension formulation platform. Catalent addressed the opportunities and challenges associated with macromolecule delivery via the lung.

RDD 2016 ended on Thursday morning with a session on the topic of building and maintaining product quality throughout the product lifecycle for orally inhaled drug products which was co-organized with the International Pharmaceutical Aerosol Consortium on Regulation and Science (IPAC-RS). Sau 'Larry' Lee discussed the FDA's scientific initiatives to address the knowledge gaps and challenges facing the development of orally inhaled drug products as well as FDA's efforts to facilitate the adoption of emerging technologies to modernize pharmaceutical development and manufacturing. Other topics included lifecycle management, ISPE's Quality Metrics Pilot Program as well as the challenges associated with combination product development.

Discussions surrounding product quality continued through Friday afternoon in the IPAC-RS symposium Meeting the Quality Challenge for Orally Inhaled Drug Products. Lively discussions surrounding Building Quality During Development Through Improved Tools & Decision Making; Advances in the Global Regulatory Framework and Quality Innovations to Improve the Patient Experience took place together with a World Regulatory Roundtable and Networking Reception.

Poster and Technology Exhibition

The Scientific Poster Session and Technology Exhibition received excellent reviews for providing two days of effective scientific and commercial networking. In addition, a VCU-hosted reception on Monday evening provided time for viewing more than 90 posters and 90 exhibitor tables.

Conference Proceedings and Mobile Access

Scientific PostersPeer-reviewed speaker papers and poster abstracts were made available in print or electronically, according to delegate preference, and during the conference via a dedicated conference website. New functionality on the mobile site allowed conference delegates to connect with each other and select favorite articles in a tailor-made compendium.

Connecting Science and PeopleNetworking

RDD is proud of its reputation for fostering long-standing professional relationships in a casual and collegial atmosphere, and RDD2016 presented many opportunities to connect with fellow attendees. Beyond the podium and poster sessions, evening receptions, breakfasts, breaks, Wednesday morning recreation, and the Banquet and Dancing all allowed attendees to network and even relax a little under the desert sun.


The organizers thank the presenters, exhibitors, sponsors and all those in attendance who make the annual Respiratory Drug Delivery series a success. We encourage you to attend and consider sponsoring future conferences so we can continue to showcase cutting-edge science from international opinion leaders.

Our next meeting is RDD Asia 2016, to be held in Goa, India, November 8-11, 2016. RDD Europe 2017 returns to Nice (Antibes), France, April 25-28, 2017. Both meetings offer invited speaker, poster, exhibition, workshop and sponsorship opportunities.

Please visit rddonline.com for deadlines and details, or contact info@rddonline.com with programming or speaker suggestions.

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