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Membership type: full

Magaly Blas

Country of origin: Peru Currently in: Peru, Lima General field of specialization: Medical and Health Sciences incl Neurosciences
OWSD Award
Academic Background


2008 Doctorate Medical and Health Sciences incl Neurosciences
Research and Profession

Current Research Activities

Medical and Health Sciences incl Neurosciences

Dr. Magaly Blas was born and raised in Lima, Peru. She studied Medicine at Cayetano Heredia Peruvian University (UPCH) where she graduated as the second-highest graduate of her medical school class. Afterwards, she was selected as the Peruvian counterpart Scholar for the first cohort of the Fogarty/Ellison Fellowship Program from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which allowed her to deepen her research experience in the field of sexually transmitted infections (STI). After this fellowship, Magaly was awarded consecutive scholarships to conduct first a Masters and then a Ph.D. in Public Health (MPH) in the epidemiology track with certificates in both STI/HIV and Biomedical and Health Informatics at the University of Washington (UW) in Seattle. It was during her track on Biomedical and Health informatics that Magaly developed interest in the study of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) to solve health problems. Magaly combined both interests, STI and ICT for the development of her PhD thesis. She conducted the first online randomized controlled trial in Latin America that evaluated the effect of a video-based intervention to increase HIV testing among Peruvian MSM. For this study, Magaly received the 2010 Global Health Council’s new investigator award in Washington DC. After finishing her PhD, Magaly was awarded the NIH-Fogarty Global Research Initiative Program (GRIP) for new foreign investigators award. This competitive grant allowed international researchers who studied in the US, funding for up to 5 years to conduct research in their home country. Magaly’s project built on her previous PhD research was a randomized controlled trial that assessed the effect of a combined web-based intervention that included an online-video, email, chat, and cell-phone text motivational messages to increase the number of MSM who get tested for HIV. In parallel, Magaly received the 2009-2010 Fogarty International Clinical Research Fellowship for her research project aimed to assess the association between Human Papilloma Virus (a virus that causes cervical cancer) and Human T-lymphotropic virus infection (a neglected virus that causes leukemia/lymphoma among other diseases) in indigenous Women from the Peruvian Amazon. Motherhood had an important impact in Magaly´s life as her current focus is to improve maternal and child health in remote rural areas in the Peruvian Amazon. Magaly is currently the principal investigator of a Grand challenges Canada grant to develop the Mama River Program. This program is training community agents (traditional midwives, health promoters and community mobilizers) to use smartphones to georeference and collect basic information from pregnant women at their communities, and send this information to a Medical Ship in order to program antenatal care visits. Mama River is also training community agents to send alerts to the medical ships whenever a high-risk pregnancy is identified. Magaly has recently been awarded the 2016 Elsevier Foundation Award for early career women scientists in the developing world and the 2016 Peru Loreal-UNESCO Concytec Award. Dr. Blas is an associate professor at UPCH School of Public Health and an affiliate associate professor at the Department of Global Health at the UW.

Publications resulting from Research: 

1. Blas M, Bravo F, Castillo W, Castillo WJ, Ballona R, Navarro P, Catacora J, Cairampoma R, Gotuzzo E. Norwegian Scabies in Peru: The Impact of Human T Cell Lymphotropic Virus Type I Infection. Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2005 Jun;72(6):855-7.
2. Blas M, Bravo F, Gotuzzo E, Castillo W, Cairampoma R. Norwegian Scabies and Tropical Spastic Paraparesis in HTLV-1-Infected Patients. Report of 3 Cases and Literature Review. Rev. Soc. Peruana Med. Inter. 16(3) 2003.
3. Alva I, Blas M, De Los Santos V, Grados F, Gutierrez M. Prevalence of Vitamin A Deficiency in Children Under 5 Years Old in a Rural Community of the Peruvian Jungle. Paediatrica 2004; 6(1): 7-12.
4. Hsieh EJ, Blas MM, La Rosa Roca S, Garcia PJ. Sexually transmitted infections and private physicians in Peru, 2003. Rev Panam Salud Pública. 2006 Oct;20(4):223-229.
5. Blas MM, Canchihuaman FA, Alva IE, Hawes SE. Pregnancy outcomes in women infected with Chlamydia trachomatis: a population-based cohort study in Washington State. Sex Trans Infect. 2007;83:314-318.
6. Curioso WH, Blas MM, Nodell B, Alva IE, Kurth AE. Opportunities for providing web-based interventions to prevent sexually transmitted infections in Peru. PLoS Med. 2007 Feb; 4(2):e11.
7. Blas MM, Alva IE, Cabello R, Garcia PJ, Carcamo C, Redmon M, Kimball AM, Ryan R, Kurth AE. Internet as a tool to access high-risk men who have sex with men from a resource-constrained setting: a study from Peru. Sex Transm Infect. 2007 Dec; 83(7):567-70.
8. Curioso WH, Blas MM. Internet, Addiction, Cybersex and Sexually Transmited Infections: Fiction or reality?. Rev Med Her 2007; 18(1):52-3.
9. García PJ, Blas MM. Sexually Transmitted Infections and HIV: A global and local overview of the epidemics. Rev Med Exp Sal Pub 2007;(3).
10. Alva IE, Blas MM, Garcia PJ, Cabello R, Kimball AM, Holmes KK. Risks and benefits of Internet use among people living with HIV/AIDS in Lima, Peru. Rev Med Exp Sal Pub 2007;(3).
11. Blas MM, Alva IE, Carcamo C, Cabello R , Goodreau SM, Kimball AM, Kurth A. Effect of an online video-based intervention to increase HIV testing in men who have sex with men in Peru. PLoS One. 2010 May 3;5(5):e10448.
12. Curioso WH, Garcia PJ, Castillo GM, Blas MM, Perez-Brumer A, Zimic M, Red QUIPU. Strengthening global health informatics research within the Andean region through international collaboration. Rev Peru Med Exp Salud Publica. 2010; 27(3): 449-57.
13. Brown B, Carcamo C, Blas MM, Valderrama M, and Halsey N. Peruvian Females Sex Workers: understanding HPV and barriers to vaccination. Vaccine 2010 Oct 15.
14. Blas MM, Alva IE, Cabello R, Carcamo C, Kurth AE. Risk Behaviors and Reasons for not Getting Tested for HIV among Men Who Have Sex with Men: An Online Survey in Peru. PLoS One. 2011;6(11):e27334. Epub 2011 Nov 9. PubMed PMID: 22096551; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3212560.
15. Brown B, Blas MM, Cabral A, Carcamo C, Gravitt PE, Halsey N. Oral sex practices, oral human papillomavirus and correlations between oral and cervical human papillomavirus prevalence among female sex workers in Lima, Peru. Int J STD AIDS. 2011 Nov;22(11):655-8. PubMed PMID: 22096051.
16. Blas MM, Curioso WH, Garcia PJ, Zimic M, Carcamo CP, Castagnetto JM, Lescano AG, Lopez DM. Training the biomedical informatics workforce in Latin America: results of a needs assessment. BMJ Open. 2011 Jan 1;1(2):e000233. PubMed PMID: 22080537.
17. Brown B, Blas M, Cabral A, Carcamo C, Gravitt P, Halsey N. Randomized trial of HPV4 vaccine assessing the response to HPV4 vaccine in two schedules among Peruvian female sex workers. Vaccine. 2012;30(13):2309-14. PMID: 22306855. PMCID: PMC3296898.
18. Alva IE, Orellana ER, Blas MM, Bernabe-Ortiz A, Cotrina A, Chiappe M, Kochel TJ, Carcamo CP, García PJ, Zunt JR, Buffardi AL, Montano SM. HTLV-1 and -2 Infections among 10 Indigenous Groups in the Peruvian Amazon. Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2012;87(5):954-6. PMID: 22964719.
19. Brown B, Blas MM, Cabral A, Byraiah G, Guerra-Giraldez C, Sarabia-Vega V, Carcamo C, Gravitt PE, Halsey NA. Human papillomavirus prevalence, cervical abnormalities and risk factors among female sex workers in Lima, Peru. Int J STD AIDS. 2012 Apr;23(4):242-7.
20. Blas MM, Alva IE, Garcia PJ, Carcamo C, Montano SM, Muñante R, Zunt JR. Association between human papillomavirus and human T-lymphotropic virus in indigenous women from the Peruvian Amazon. PLoS One. 2012;7(8):e44240.
21. Blas MM, Menacho LA, Alva IE, Cabello R, Orellana ER (2013) Motivating Men Who Have Sex with Men to Get Tested for HIV through the Internet and Mobile Phones: A Qualitative Study. PLoS ONE 8(1): e54012.
22. Nureña CR, Brown B, Galea JT, Sánchez H, Blas MM (2013) HPV and Genital Warts among Peruvian Men Who Have Sex with Men and Transgender People: Knowledge, Attitudes and Treatment Experiences. PLoS ONE 8(3): e58684.
23. Menacho LA, Blas MM, Alva IE, Cabello R, Orellana ER. Short Text Messages to Motivate HIV Testing Among Men Who have Sex with Men: a Qualitative Study in Lima, Peru. The Open AIDS Journal. Open AIDS J. 2013 Apr 05;7:1-6.
24. Brown B, Blas MM, Heidari O, Carcamo C, Halsey NA. Reported Changes in sexual behavior and HPV knowledge in Peruvian female sex workers following participation in an HPV vaccine trial. Int J STD AIDS. 2013 Jul;24(7):531-5.
25. Blas MM, Alva IE, Garcia PJ, Carcamo C, Montano SM, Mori N, Muñante R, Zunt JR. High Prevalence of Human T-lymphotropic virus infection in Indigenous Women from the Peruvian Amazon. PLoS One. 2013 Sep 5;8(9):e73978.
26. Shroff N, Brown B, Kinsler J, Blas M, Carcamo C, Halsey N. Barriers and Facilitators in the Recruitment and Retention of Peruvian Female Sex Workers in a Randomized HPV Vaccine Trial. Vaccine, in press.
27. Low HC, Silver MI, Brown BJ, Leng CY, Blas MM, Gravitt PE, Woo YL. Comparison
of Hybribio GenoArray and Roche human papillomavirus (HPV) Linear Array for HPV
genotyping in anal swab samples. J Clin Microbiol. 2014 Dec 10.
28. Soohoo M, Blas M, Byraiah G, Carcamo C, Brown B. Cervical HPV Infection in Female Sex Workers: A Global Perspective. Open AIDS J. 2013 Dec 30;7:58-66.
29. Kinsler JJ, Blas MM, Cabral A, Carcamo C, Halsey N, Brown B. Understanding STI Risk and Condom Use Patterns by Partner Type Among Female Sex Workers in Peru. Open AIDS J. 2014 May 30;8:17-20.
30. Blas MM, Brown B, Menacho L, Alva IE, Silva-Santisteban A, Carcamo C. HPV Prevalence in Multiple Anatomical Sites among Men Who Have Sex with Men in Peru. PLoS One. 2015 Oct 5;10(10):e0139524.
31. Menacho LA, Blas MM. [How to produce a video to promote HIV testing in men who have sex with men?]. Rev Peru Med Exp Salud Publica. 2015 Sep;32(3):519-25. Spanish.
32. García PJ, Egoavil MS, Blas MM, Alvarado-Vásquez E, Curioso WH, Zimic M, Castagnetto JM, Lescano AG, Lopez DM, Cárcamo CP. [Development and institutionalization of the first online certificate and Master Program of Biomedical Informatics in global health in Peru]. Rev Peru Med Exp Salud Publica. 2015 Apr-Jun;32(2):356-60. Spanish.

Current profession

Current professional activities type: 

Prizes, Grants and Awards

OWSD Awards

Feb 2016
Elsevier Foundation Award for early career women scientists in the developing world
For her work using information and communication technology to solve health problems, particularly sexually transmitted diseases in urban and rural Peru. Dr. Blas also leads the Mama River Programme, training community members to use smartphones to collect basic information from pregnant women and forward this information to a medical ship to schedule visits.

Other Awards

Feb 2016
2016 Elsevier Foundation Award for early career women scientists in the developing world
Mar 2016
2016 Loreal-UNESCO Concytec Award
Jun 2010
New investigator in Global Health Award from the Global Health Council
Dec 2002
“Honor al Exito“ Award

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