Niharika B. Mettu, MD, PhD
My passion is the treatment of patients with gastrointestinal (GI) malignancies. I strive to take the very best care of my patients that I possibly can. Working with world-class colleagues and a multidisciplinary team, which includes radiation and surgical oncologists, makes this possible. I first became interested in oncology as a first-year medical student when I got to see tumors in my pathology class. I came to appreciate the beauty of the gastrointestinal tract while observing GI surgeries as a second-year medical student. My fascination with how cancers develop and how we may develop new therapies to treat cancer led me to pursue a PhD in molecular cancer biology. This training honed the critical thinking skills that I still use to this day, as I decide how to best treat my patients. The close relationships that oncologists have with patients and their families clinched my decision to pursue a career as a medical oncologist. During my fellowship training, I sought out subspecialty training in GI oncology. When I am not working, I enjoy spending time with my husband and four young children and running.
Ratings and Reviews
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Training and Education
Clinical Focus and Research
My long-term goal is to develop new therapies to treat patients with gastrointestinal cancers. To accomplish this, I am active in designing, writing, and running Phase I, II, and III clinical trials. I am interested in the correlative science that furthers our understanding of cancer at a molecular level. I am interested in the identification of biomarkers, which are characteristics of a given patient's tumor that may help us to understand his or her prognosis or how well he or she may respond to a given therapy. The overall objective of this research is to use the knowledge gained to personalize care and find the very best therapies that will enable our patients to fight their cancer.
INCYTE 54828-101 Advanced MalignanciesIRB# PRO00061567 , NCT# NCT02393248
MEDI9447 and Chemotherapy with or without Durvalumab in Pancreatic Ductal AdenocarcinomaIRB# PRO00100142 , NCT# NCT03611556
Duke Health contracts with most major health insurance carriers and transplant networks, including the ones listed below.
- Aetna Choice POS, Aetna Choice POS II
- Aetna Elect Choice HMO, Aetna Open Access Elect Choice
- Aetna Health Network Only, Aetna Health Network Option
- Aetna HMO
- Aetna Limited Benefit Insurance PPO
- Aetna Managed Choice POS
- Aetna Medicare Value Plan (HMO)
- Aetna Medicare Value Plus Plan (HMO)
- Aetna Medicare Essential Plan (PPO)
- Aetna Medicare Eagle Plan (PPO)
- Aetna Open Access HMO, Open Access Aetna Select, Aetna Open Access Managed Choice
- Aetna Open Choice PPO
- Aetna PCP Coordinated POS Plan
- Aetna Quality Point of Service (QPOS)
- Aetna Select HMO
- Aetna Traditional Choice
- Aetna Voluntary Indemnity Group Plan
- Aetna Whole Health – Duke WakeMed WKCC
- Ambetter of North Carolina
Blue Cross Blue Shield of NC
- Blue Advantage
- Blue Medicare (HMO, PPO)*
- Blue Options (123, PPO, HSA)
- Blue Select
- NC State Employees Health Plan
*Duke HomeCare and Hospice does not participate in the plan.
- Bright Health
- Cigna Behavioral Health (*Limited eligibility)
- Cigna Choice Plus
- Cigna Connect Individual Family Plan
- Cigna Open Access
- Cigna Open Access Plus
*Please call Cigna Behavioral Heath to see if the provider is participating in your plan.
Duke Group Plans
- Duke Basic
- Duke Select
- Experience Health Medicare Advantage (HMO) Plan
- First Health
- Gateway Health Alliance
- Halifax Physician-Hospital Organization
- Humana Choice (PPO)
- Humana Choice - Medicare Advantage (PPO)
- Humana ChoiceCare - Medicare Advantage (PPO)
- Humana Gold Choice - Medicare Advantage (PFFS)
- Humana Gold Plus - Medicare Advantage (HMO)
- Humana Medicare Advantage Group Plan - NC State Retirees
- First Medicare Direct*
- Medicare Part A
- Medicare Part B
*This is for Wake County only.
- MultiPlan / Private Healthcare Systems
- NC Medicaid*
*Not all Duke locations and doctors participate in this plan. Please contact the location you will be visiting to determine what is accepted.
- OneNet PPO
- Optima Family Care (Medicaid HMO in VA)*
- Optima Individual & Family (On & Off Exchange Plans)
- Optima Plus (PPO)
- Optima Vantage (HMO)
*Duke Primary Care, Duke University Hospital, Duke Regional Hospital, and Duke Raleigh Hospital are not participating with this plan.
- TRICARE Prime
- TRICARE Prime Remote
- TRICARE Select
- AARP Medicare Complete (HMO, PPO)*
- AARP Medicare Complete Essential (HMO)*
- All Savers Alternate Funding
- All Savers Fully Insured
- United Healthcare (HMO, PPO, POS)
- United Healthcare Charter/Charter Balance/Charter Plus
- United Healthcare Choice/Choice Plus
- United Healthcare Core/Core Essential
- United Healthcare Navigate/Navigate Plus/Navigate Balanced
- United Healthcare of the River Valley
- United Healthcare Option PPO
- United Healthcare Options PPO with Harvard Pilgrim
- United Healthcare Passport Connect Choice/Choice Plus
- United Healthcare Passport Connect Options PPO
- United Healthcare Select/Select Plus
- United Medical Resources (UMR)
*Duke HomeCare and Hospice, freestanding radiology locations, and mental health providers do not participate with the plan.
Before scheduling your appointment, we strongly recommend you contact your insurance company to verify that the Duke Health location or provider you plan to visit is included in your network. Your insurance company will also be able to inform you of any co-payments, co–insurances, or deductibles that will be your responsibility. If you proceed in scheduling an appointment and your health insurance benefits do not participate with Duke, your out of pocket liability may be higher. We will contact you regarding your coverage and patient liability. If you are uninsured, learn more about our financial assistance policy.