What is the International Common Name or INN of a drug?

the International Common Name (INN) is the official name given to a generic, non-commercial drug or active ingredient by the World Health Organization. It is also known by the acronym POUSADAde English International Community Name.

The DCI name proposal and approval system was established in WHO 1950 resolution WH3.11, although the first list of DCI names was not published until 1953.

Since then, the system has been coordinated by a group of experts that meet several times a year to study and, if necessary, approve the creation of new CIDs, including reviewing requests for CIDs that may be made by external entities. , mainly pharmaceutical laboratories and academic institutions.

INN lists are published by WHO in Latin, English, French, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese and Russian, and include references to other common names. For example, phenylephrine (INN in English) and phenylephrine (INN in Spanish).

The total number of approved CIDs through 2017 exceeded 7,000 names with an average of 125-150 new CDIs each year.

Purpose of the International Common Name

Since its inception, the objective of the International Common Denomination has been to provide a unique, specific and universal name that allows the identification of a drug substance unambiguously.

The same pharmacological substance can be known by chemical names, for example the name according to the IUPAC (International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry) rules, for colloquial names and for names of official registration and national pharmacopoeias. In addition, the same drug substance may be marketed under various trade names and registered trademarks (proper names).

Among the advantages of using DCI can be mentioned:

INNs, being a standardized and unique name, allow a clear identification of medicines among health professionals, and with it a safer prescription and dispensing to the patient. INNs also greatly facilitate communication and information exchange between scientists and health professionals internationally. INNs use suffixes and prefixes in the names of pharmacologically related substances (branches). This allows healthcare professionals in contact with medicines to recognize the pharmacological group of a substance quickly. It also facilitates teaching, drug supply management, and other pharmacology-related areas.
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International Common Names can be used in many contexts and for very different purposes. For example in pharmacopoeias, product labeling and information, advertising and promotional material, legal and regulatory scientific literature, or as a basis for product names (eg in brand names of generic drugs).

Countries that officially adopt DCIs often regulate certain aspects of their use. For example, in some countries, they require that all drug containers contain the common name of a certain size under the trade name.

Regulation of the use of the DCI may come from country-specific national legislation, international law, or both, for example in the European Union. In many countries, in addition, naming systems are maintained that are transcripts of INNs, for example, the DOE (Common Denomination in Spanish or Common Denomination in Spanish).

General characteristics of the inns

Names approved as International Common Names are selected by WHO in accordance with the recommendations WHO Expert Advisory Panel on International Pharmacopoeia and Pharmaceutical Preparations.

The INN selection process begins with an application by a producer or inventor of an active ingredient. The request may include a name proposal. Upon review of the request, a DCI name is chosen and published with a deadline for submissions and objections by any of the parties involved.

After the challenge period, the selected INN name acquires the status of Recommended INN and will be published as such in the list of INNs below.

An INN name is given to a single substance that can be unambiguously characterized by a chemical formula or name. In the International Common Name system mixtures of substances are never included.

INN names are not granted to plant preparations or homeopathic products.

DCI names are also not selected for substances with a long history of medical use that have a widely established common name, eg many alkaloids (morphine, codeine), or if the chemical name is simple, eg acetic acid.

Although INNs are given for a single substance, they refer to the active part of the molecule, so an INN can be used for various combinations of that molecule, for example for different salts and for different esters. In such cases, CDIs are known as modified INNs.

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For example, mepyramine maleate would be a modified INN constructed by combining mepyramine (INN active moiety) with malic acid. If the modified DCI is not convenient, for example if the stem part has a very long name, the DCI program can create short names for these stems; for example mesylate instead of methanesulfonate.

The entire process of selecting and approving an ICD respects trademark rights. If no proprietary name conflicts are found and no company objects to the INN, the INN will finally be approved and move to recommended CDI status.

The names of the DCIs are published in the public domain and without copyright, which implies that anyone can use the DCIs freely and that no one can register them as a trademark or take any other action that prevents their free use by other people, institutions or companies.

Likewise, to avoid and reduce confusion, especially in patients, names and brands should not be derived from INN names.

Branches in the International Common Names

Many active principles and pharmacological substances of the same therapeutic group or chemically related form branches in the inns. Substances belonging to a branch contain in their name a common part that identifies the therapeutic group or chemical class to which they belong.

These common parts are usually suffixes, letters repeated at the end of the name, although suffixes are also used in some cases. The branches are published together with the DCI lists in the so-called Caderno.

Some examples of these branches are (in English/Spanish if there is a specific Spanish version):

-anib: angiogenesis inhibitors. Example: pazopanib. -anserine/-anserine: serotoninergic receptor antagonists. Ex: Ritanserin and mianserin. -arith: antiarthritic agents. Example: lobenzarite. -ase/-ase: enzymes. Eg: alteplase. -azepam: benzodiazepines. Eg: diazepam. -caine/-caine: local anesthetics. Eg: procaine. -coxib: COX-2 (cyclooxygenase-2) inhibitors. -mab: monoclonal antibodies. Eg: infliximab. -navir: protest antiretroviral inhibitors. Ex; darunavir. -smell: beta blockers. Eg: atenolol. -pril: ACE (angiotensin converting enzyme) inhibitors. Example: captopril. -sartan/-sartan: angiotensin II receptor antagonists. Example: losartan. -tinib: tyrosine kinase inhibitors. Eg: imatinib. -vastatin: HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors (3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-coenzyme A reductase inhibitors, a lipid-lowering group). Example: simvastatin. -vec: gene therapy vectors. Ex: alipogene tiparvovec/alipogén tiparvovec. -vir: antivirals in general. Example: acyclovir. arte-: Artemisinin family, a group of agents against malaria (malaria). Ex: artemether/artemeter. cef-: cephalosporin-type antibiotics. Ex: cephalexin/cephalexin. io-: iodine radiopharmaceuticals. Ex: iobenguano-/iobenguano.
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Other generic drug naming standards

Many countries have national generic drug naming systems, although in most of them, as a result of international collaboration, they have made their systems identical to the DCI, although most also maintain exceptions for some drugs for a variety of reasons, particularly if these drugs already had proper names prior to adoption. of the DCIs.

For example, paracetamol (INN), one of the most commonly used analgesics and antipyretics, has names in other generic drug naming systems:

International Common Name (INN/INN) paracetamol (English) paracetamol (Latin) paracetamol (French) paracetamol (Spanish) paracetamol (Russian) باراسيتامول (Arabic) 对乙酰氨基酚 (Chinese) Australian approved name (ANA) paracetamol British Approved Name (BANING) paracetamol United States Adopted Name (USA) United States Pharmacopoeia (USP) paracetamol (English) acetomiphene (Spanish) Name accepted in Japanese (JAN) Japanese Pharmacopoeia (JP) アセトアミノフェン (Japanese) paracetamol (English) Other generic names N-acetyl-p-aminophenol APAP p-acetamidophenol paracetamol Trademarks/Names Gelocati Tylenol panadol Gelocati systematic name (IUPAC) N-(4-hydroxyphenyl)acetamide or ethanamide ATC code (Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical Classification System) N02BE01

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