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Improving access to high-quality cancer care in Uganda

Professors of radiation oncology at Washington University in St. Louis are teaming up with the Uganda Cancer Institute and Makerere University School of Medicine in Africa to modernize radiation therapy for cancer patients. WashU’s collaboration with the Uganda Cancer Institute is supported by the McDonnell Academy’s 2021 Global Incubator Seed Grant initiative. Makerere University is a McDonnell Academy university partner.

It is predicted that there will be 24 million new cancer cases per year globally in 2030, with 75% of cancer deaths in the developing world. Radiotherapy (RT) is an effective and essential therapy for cancer treatment. However, access to advanced RT in low to middle-income countries is limited due to a lack of RT expertise and training, and expensive equipment and software.

Rapid Deployment of Radiation Therapy Treatments in Uganda, Baozhou Sun, primary investigator

Intensity-Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT), an advanced type of radiation therapy, are part of the research project to deliver advanced RT to patients in Uganda conducted by Institute for Public Health Faculty Scholar, Baozhou Sun, PhD, and colleague Tianyu Zhao, PhD, both associate professors of radiation oncology at WashU. Watch this short video clip provided by UCI-TV: R. Kavuma Awusi, MD, a collaborator on the Sun’s project, explains anticipated patient outcomes using current vs. older radiation therapy treatment at Uganda Cancer Institute. Watch a video clip provided by UCI-TV: Tianyu Zhao, explains how he and colleague Baozhou Sun helped train staff at Uganda Cancer Institute.

Read more about this research collaboration at Institute for Public Health.