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Good Laboratory Practices (GLP): Ensuring Quality and Reliability in Scientific Research

Good Laboratory Practices (GLP)


Good Laboratory Practices (GLP) are the guidelines and standards that laboratories and researchers follow to help ensure the accuracy, reliability, and reproducibility of experimental results in scientific research. GLP encompasses the principles and practices of designing and conducting experiments and documenting and reporting the results. This blog delves into the fundamental aspects of GLP and how it helps life sciences organizations maintain scientific rigor.

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Defining Good Laboratory Practice

GLP is a set of internationally recognized quality assurance principles and guidelines that govern the conduct of non-clinical laboratory studies. These guidelines were established to help ensure that the data generated from these studies are reliable, accurate, and traceable. GLP applies to facilities, equipment, personnel, methodologies, data management, and reporting.

Key Principles of GLP

GLP is based on fundamental principles for maintaining quality and reliability in laboratory studies, including:

Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs): SOPs provide detailed instructions on how to carry out specific tasks or procedures in the laboratory and help to ensure consistency and accuracy across experiments and researchers.

Read our case study: Fast DocuSign Validation and SOPs for Clinical-Stage Biopharma Needing GxP System Expertise.

Personnel Training: Training laboratory personnel to conduct experiments consistently is imperative. Training programs should cover experimental techniques, safety protocols, data management, and GLP regulations. See how USDM can help your organization with GxP training.

Facilities and Equipment: Laboratories must provide suitable facilities and maintain well-calibrated equipment to help ensure accurate and reliable results. Regular equipment maintenance, calibration, and validation are essential to minimize errors and deviations.

Quality Assurance: GLP helps organizations to implement quality assurance measures throughout the entire experimental process. This includes validating analytical methods, documenting experimental procedures, and conducting regular inspections and audits to identify and rectify any potential issues. Read how ZenQMS has partnered with USDM Life Sciences to simplify GxP quality assurance. 

Data Integrity and Management: Accurate and traceable data is the cornerstone of GLP. Laboratories must establish robust systems for data collection, storage, and archiving so that data can be retrieved and verified at any time. Proper data management minimizes the risk of data loss, manipulation, or unauthorized access. 

Reporting and Documentation: GLP requires comprehensive documentation of experimental procedures, observations, and results. This documentation should be clear, detailed, and organized to enable effective review, replication, and verification of the study. Transparency and traceability are vital to maintaining scientific integrity.

GLP in Various Research Fields

Good Laboratory Practices are relevant across research fields, including pharmaceuticals, chemicals, pesticides, biotechnology, and environmental sciences. GLP helps ensure that data generated from non-clinical studies–such as toxicology, environmental fate, and efficacy testing–are reliable and usable for regulatory submissions and risk assessment. 

GLP and Regulatory Compliance

In addition to maintaining scientific integrity, GLP is highly relevant to regulatory compliance. Regulatory authorities like the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) require that data from non-clinical studies that are submitted for product registration comply with GLP regulations. GLP is necessary for obtaining approval and market authorization for pharmaceuticals, chemicals, and other regulated products.

Challenges in Maintaining GLP

While GLP provides a robust framework for ensuring quality and reliability in scientific research, challenges still exist; for example, establishing laboratory SOPs, managing equipment and documentation, and providing necessary training. Some laboratories may face resource constraints, such as limited funding or outdated equipment, which can hinder their ability to maintain GLP.

How can USDM Life Sciences help with your GLP needs?

  • Regulatory Strategy Operations 
  • Regulatory and Clinical Strategy 
  • Lifecycle Management 
  • FDA/Agency Meeting Preparation 
  • IND, NDA/BLA, ANDA, IDE, 510(K), PMA Preparation 
  • Submissions & Publishing & eCTD 
  • Drug & Device Labeling 
  • Regulatory Affairs IT Systems 
  • Process Improvement & Implementation 
  • Lab Controls and Data Integrity 
  • Data Integrity Remediation 
  • Interim Subject Matter Experts & Staffing 
  • Staff Training 
  • Project Management 
  • Quality Systems Design, Strategy, and Implementation 
  • Quality Systems Development 
  • Data Integrity 
  • Risk Management 
  • Design Controls 
  • Support to Implement New/Revised Standards & Regulations 
  • FDA/EMA/Health Authority Agency Intelligence 
  • Coordination with Regulatory Counsel 
  • Third-Party Support 
  • Auditing and Assessments 
  • Supplier Assessments

We’ve helped 200+ pre-commercial life science companies. Contact us to see how we can help you! 

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