Can DITA support the development of Common Technical Document (CTD) modules, summary of product characteristics (SmPC), and drug master files (DMF) for regulatory agencies?

Utilizing DITA for the development of Common Technical Document (CTD) modules, Summary of Product Characteristics (SmPC), and Drug Master Files (DMF) streamlines the creation of critical documentation required for regulatory submissions to health authorities. DITA’s structured authoring approach offers several advantages in this context:

Modular Documentation

Regulatory submissions often consist of various modules or sections, such as Quality, Non-Clinical, and Clinical. DITA allows each module to be created as an independent topic or element. This modularity simplifies the organization of content, ensuring that different teams can work on specific sections simultaneously. Authors can easily assemble complete regulatory documents by referencing and combining these modular components.

Content Reuse

DITA’s content reuse capabilities are invaluable for regulatory documentation. Standardized content, such as product descriptions, manufacturing processes, and safety data, can be authored once and reused across multiple submissions. This ensures consistency and accuracy while reducing the effort required to update information when needed, especially when submitting similar products or variations.

Version Control and Traceability

Regulatory documentation must adhere to strict version control and traceability requirements. DITA provides robust versioning features, allowing organizations to track changes, revisions, and the history of each document component. This traceability ensures that documentation aligns with the evolving regulatory landscape and facilitates audit readiness.


Here’s an example of how DITA can be used to structure a CTD module:

<topic id="quality_module">
  <title>Quality Module</title>
    <section id="drug_substance">
      <title>Drug Substance</title>
      <p>This section provides information about the drug substance.</p>
    <section id="drug_product">
      <title>Drug Product</title>
      <p>This section details information about the drug product.</p>
    <section id="manufacturing">
      <p>This section outlines the manufacturing process.</p>

In this example, DITA structures the Quality Module into sections for Drug Substance, Drug Product, and Manufacturing, ensuring clarity and organization in regulatory submissions.