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Epidemics. 2015 Mar;10:102-7. doi: 10.1016/j.epidem.2015.02.002. Epub 2015 Feb 16.

Modelling challenges in context: lessons from malaria, HIV, and tuberculosis.

Author information

1
Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02115, United States; Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02115, United States.
2
Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02115, United States.
3
Office of the Director General, World Health Organization, Avenue Appia, 1211 Geneva 27, Switzerland.
4
Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, Oxford OX1 3PS, United Kingdom.
5
Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02115, United States; Division of Global Health Equity, Brigham & Women's Hospital, Boston, MA 02115, United States.
6
South African Centre for Epidemiological Modelling and Analysis, Stellenbosch, South Africa; Wits Reproductive Health and HIV Institute, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa.
7
Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02115, United States; Department of Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02115, United States. Electronic address: cbuckee@hsph.harvard.edu.

Abstract

Malaria, HIV, and tuberculosis (TB) collectively account for several million deaths each year, with all three ranking among the top ten killers in low-income countries. Despite being caused by very different organisms, malaria, HIV, and TB present a suite of challenges for mathematical modellers that are particularly pronounced in these infections, but represent general problems in infectious disease modelling, and highlight many of the challenges described throughout this issue. Here, we describe some of the unifying challenges that arise in modelling malaria, HIV, and TB, including variation in dynamics within the host, diversity in the pathogen, and heterogeneity in human contact networks and behaviour. Through the lens of these three pathogens, we provide specific examples of the other challenges in this issue and discuss their implications for informing public health efforts.

KEYWORDS:

HIV; Malaria; Modelling; Tuberculosis

PMID:
25843394
PMCID:
PMC4451070
DOI:
10.1016/j.epidem.2015.02.002
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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