USPNF Overview

The United States Pharmacopeia and The National Formulary (USP–NF) is a book of public pharmacopeial standards for chemical and biological drug substances, dosage forms, compounded preparations, excipients, medical devices, and dietary supplements.

USP–NF Components

USP–NF is a combination of two compendia, the United States Pharmacopeia (USP) and the National Formulary (NF). Monographs for drug substances, dosage forms, and compounded preparations are featured in the USP. Monographs for dietary supplements and ingredients appear in a separate section of the USP. Excipient monographs are in the NF. 


A monograph includes the name of the ingredient or preparation; the definition; packaging, storage, and labeling requirements; and the specification. The specification consists of a series of tests, procedures for the tests, and acceptance criteria. These tests and procedures require the use of official USP Reference Standards. Medicinal ingredients and products will have the stipulated strength, quality, and purity if they conform to the requirements of the monograph and relevant general chapters.

General Chapters

Tests and procedures referred to in multiple monographs are described in detail in the USP–NF general chapters.

General Notices

The General Notices provide definitions for terms used in the monographs, as well as information that is necessary to interpret the monograph requirements. More information can be found at the General Notices page. 

Official Recognition

The U.S. Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetics Act designates the USP–NF as official compendia for drugs marketed in the United States. A drug product in the U.S. market must conform to the standards in USP–NF to avoid possible charges of adulteration and misbranding. Learn more

Standards Established through a Public Process

USP creates and continuously revises USP–NF standards through a unique public–private collaborative process, which involves pharmaceutical scientists in industry, academia, and government as well as other interested parties from anywhere in the world. Learn more.

Warning Notice about USP–NF on Unauthorized Websites

General Announcements

Early Input Sought on Proposed Naturally Occurring Endoxtoxin (NOE) RS (27–May–2016)

Eighteen New Revision Bulletins (27–May–2016)

Seven New Interim Revision Announcements (27–May–2016)

Commentary for PF 42(1) IRAs (27–May–2016)

Pending Page Updated (27–May–2016)

Publication Correction USP 39–NF 34 1S Online: Errata Icon for GC <661.1> (27-May-2016)

Notice of Intent to Revise: Trihexyphenidyl Hydrochloride Oral Solution (04–May–2016)

Notice of Intent to Revise: Trihexyphenidyl Hydrochloride Extended-Release Capsules (04–May–2016)

Expert Panel Opportunities; visit Call for Candidates to learn more and apply:

  • Analytical Methodologies Based on the Light Scattering Phenomena Expert Panel (deadline: June 3, 2016)
  • Enzyme Expert Panel (deadline: June 13, 2016)
  • Analytical Methodologies Based on the Light Scattering Phenomena Expert Panel (deadline: June 3, 2016)
  • Enzyme Expert Panel (deadline: June 13, 2016)