Novel Therapies for Treating Cervical Cancer in Peru (2022-2023)

Globally, more and more people are being diagnosed with and dying from cancer every year, particularly in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The World Health Organization predicts that the number of global cancer deaths will double by 2040 if the current situation is maintained. Surgery remains the cornerstone treatment for cancer. However, five billion people lack access to basic surgical care, and disparities continue to grow.

Duke researchers have demonstrated the safety and efficacy of a point-of-care ethanol ethyl cellulose (PEEC) therapy, which can be used as an alternative to surgery in some clinical situations. This project team aimed to translate this therapy into the clinic for treatment of cervical cancer. Specifically, the team focused on objectives that will ensure successful clinical translation of PEEC in Peru, the first launch country for this novel therapy. 

Team members pursued activities in two subteams. The first team set out to assess the different types of healthcare systems in LMICs to understand how PEEC could best be integrated. The second team aimed to identify and plan a path to regulatory approval for PEEC (e.g., U.S. Food and Drug Administration [FDA], Peruvian FDA, local institutional review boards). 

Team members spoke with experts at Duke and in Peru to better understand the nation’s healthcare landscape and created a stakeholder matrix. They then developed an in-depth and culturally appropriate interview guide and prepared an IRB submission for Duke’s Campus IRB.


Fall 2022 – Spring 2023 

Team Outputs

Kicking Cancer Quicker in Peru (2023 Fortin Foundation Bass Connections Virtual Showcase)

Novel Therapies for Cervical Cancer in Peru (poster by Sofia Chodri, Amy Guan, Kayla Hendrickson, Gareth Kelleher, Anika Mandavilli, Perla Medrano, Laya Sathyan, Neha Shaw, Marlee Krieger and Brian Crouch, presented at Fortin Foundation Bass Connections Showcase, Duke University, April 19, 2023)


Stakeholder analysis 

Interview guide 


Image: Vistas de Lima, Peru, by Mariano Mantel, licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

View of Lima, Peru.

Team Leaders

  • Brian Crouch, Pratt School of Engineering-Biomedical Engineering
  • Marlee Krieger, Pratt School of Engineering-Biomedical Engineering

/graduate Team Members

  • Erika Chelales, Biomedical Engineering-PHD
  • Kayla Hendrickson, Global Health - MSc
  • Perla Medrano, Global Health - MSc

/undergraduate Team Members

  • Sofia Chodri, Program II (AB)
  • Amy Guan, Biomedical Engineering (BSE)
  • Gareth Kelleher, Biology (BS)
  • Anika Mandavilli, Statistical Science (BS)
  • Laya Sathyan, Public Policy Studies (AB)
  • Rachel Shaw, Biology (BS)

/zcommunity Team Members

  • Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia
  • HopeHPV