Multi-scale modeling for the transmission of influenza and the evaluation of interventions toward it

Sci Rep. 2015 Mar 11;5:8980. doi: 10.1038/srep08980.

Abstract

Mathematical modeling of influenza epidemic is important for analyzing the main cause of the epidemic and finding effective interventions towards it. The epidemic is a dynamic process. In this process, daily infections are caused by people's contacts, and the frequency of contacts can be mainly influenced by their cognition to the disease. The cognition is in turn influenced by daily illness attack rate, climate, and other environment factors. Few existing methods considered the dynamic process in their models. Therefore, their prediction results can hardly be explained by the mechanisms of epidemic spreading. In this paper, we developed a heterogeneous graph modeling approach (HGM) to describe the dynamic process of influenza virus transmission by taking advantage of our unique clinical data. We built social network of studied region and embedded an Agent-Based Model (ABM) in the HGM to describe the dynamic change of an epidemic. Our simulations have a good agreement with clinical data. Parameter sensitivity analysis showed that temperature influences the dynamic of epidemic significantly and system behavior analysis showed social network degree is a critical factor determining the size of an epidemic. Finally, multiple scenarios for vaccination and school closure strategies were simulated and their performance was analyzed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Computer Simulation
  • Disease Outbreaks
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Influenza, Human / epidemiology*
  • Influenza, Human / prevention & control
  • Influenza, Human / transmission*
  • Middle Aged
  • Models, Theoretical*
  • North Carolina / epidemiology
  • Population Surveillance
  • Young Adult