Meet the BP Team
The British Pharmacopoeia (BP) team consists of various professionals who work together to develop and maintain the pharmacopoeia.
Collaboration among these individuals and groups is essential to create and maintain a comprehensive and up-to-date British Pharmacopoeia that sets quality standards for medicinal substances and pharmaceutical products used in the United Kingdom. The team is comprised of:
- The British Pharmacopoeia Commission (BPC)
- Technical Advisors
- The BP Secretariat
- The BP Laboratory
You can learn more about each team below:
About The BPC
The British Pharmacopoeia Commission (BPC) is an advisory non-departmental public body, sponsored by the Department of Health and Social Care. A review was carried out December 2014 and January 2015 which confirmed that the BPC's functions are needed and that it is operating effectively, this review is publicly available here.
The BPC is responsible for:
- preparing new editions of the British Pharmacopoeia (BP) and British Pharmacopoeia (Veterinary)
- the selection and publication of British Approved Names (BAN)
- providing clear policies and technical advice for the BP
- providing advice to the United Kingdom delegation to the European Pharmacopoeia Commission
- appointing members to expert advisory groups, panels of experts and working parties
Members of the BPC
Members of the BPC are appointed by the Department of Health and Social Care's Appointments Team, on behalf of the Secretary of State and the Northern Ireland Minister. Information on current members of the British Pharmacopoeia Commission is included in each edition of the BP.
The BPC usually holds three meetings per year. Summary minutes of all BPC meetings are publicly available and can be found here.
Fees and Expenses
Members are entitled to claim fees and expenses in accordance with BP policy.
Code of Practice
All members of the British Pharmacopoeia Commission are required to comply with the MHRA Code of Practice on Identifying, Declaring and Managing Interests.
The activities of the BPC are reported annually as part of the medicine’s advisory bodies' annual reports.
About Technical Advisors
BP Technical Advisors are professionals who provide expertise and guidance in the development and maintenance of the British Pharmacopoeia.
The role of a BP Technical Advisor involves working closely with the British Pharmacopoeia Commission (BPC), which is responsible for overseeing the development of the pharmacopoeia. Technical Advisors contribute their knowledge and experience in specific areas of pharmaceutical sciences to ensure that the standards outlined in the British Pharmacopoeia are accurate, up to date, and aligned with current regulatory requirements.
Technical Advisors may have expertise in various fields such as pharmaceutical chemistry, pharmacology, microbiology, analytical techniques, or formulation development. They participate in the review and evaluation of proposed monographs, which contain specific tests and standards for the identification, purity, and quality of medicinal substances and products. They also provide input on new developments in pharmaceutical science and technology, ensuring that the British Pharmacopoeia remains relevant and reflects advances in the field.
Appointment of Technical Advisors
The BPC appoints experts to the supporting expert advisory groups (EAGs), panels of experts and working parties. Members are from the pharmaceutical industry (innovative and generic), the NHS and academia. Representatives from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) also participate in the work of these groups. A list of members is included in the current edition of the British Pharmacopoeia under Membership of Expert Advisory Groups, Panels of Experts and Working Parties.
All members are required to comply with the MHRA Code of Practice on Identifying, Declaring and Managing Interests.
Summary minutes of all EAG, Panel and Working Party meetings are publicly available and can be found here
Members are usually appointed for a 4-year term and a full membership review is carried out every 4 years.
Expert Advisory Groups, Panels of Experts and Working Parties
The expert advisory groups and panels of experts are generally focused on the production of monographs for medicines. They work through meetings and/or by correspondence and are split up into specific areas. Working parties have similar compositions and practices as EAGs/panels but are established for a specific time period and focus on a specialised area:
Expert Advisory Groups
- AIM (formally ABS): Anti Infective Medicines
- BIO: Biological and Biotechnological Products
- HCM: Herbal and Complementary Medicines
- MC1: Medicinal Chemicals
- MC2: Medicinal Chemicals
- MC3: Medicinal Chemicals
- PCN: Pharmacy and Nomenclature
- ULM: Unlicensed Medicines
Panels of Experts
- BLP: Blood Products
- CX: Excipients
- IGC: Inorganic and General Chemicals
- MIC: Microbiology
- RAD: Radioactive Materials
- VET: Veterinary Medicines
- VIP: Veterinary Immunological Products
- ATMP: Advanced Therapy Medicinal Products
- AQbD: Analytical Quality by Design
- BIO-DPS: Alternative Approaches for Documentary and Physical Standards for Biotechnological Products
Want to become a Technical Advisor?
Visit this page to find out how to apply.
The BP Secretariat
The British Pharmacopoeia Commission is supported by a Secretariat that is provided by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency and is made up of individuals from different scientific disciplines including chemistry, pharmacy, and microbiology.
The Secretariat supports the work of the BP by:
Preparing the new and revised monographs and other texts for inclusion in the annual publication
Arranging and supporting all the meetings of the British Pharmacopoeia Commission and the Expert Advisory Groups, Panels of Experts and Working Parties
Working with colleagues from the MHRA and with national and international organisations to ensure that the published and physical standards are of the highest quality and are available in a timely manner
The BP Laboratory
The laboratory supports the work of the BP by:
- supporting the work of the BPC
- carrying out practical assessments of analytical methods
- providing scientific advice to the BPC's expert advisory groups
The laboratory is also responsible for the procurement, establishment and maintenance of British Pharmacopoeia Chemical Reference Substances (BPCRS) which are used to support the monographs of the BP.