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Pathogens. 2019 Nov 21;8(4). pii: E253. doi: 10.3390/pathogens8040253.

Construction of A New Dose-Response Model for Staphylococcus aureus Considering Growth and Decay Kinetics on Skin.

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Department of Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan 48824, USA.
Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan 48824, USA.


. In order to determine the relationship between an exposure dose of Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) on the skin and the risk of infection, an understanding of the bacterial growth and decay kinetics is very important. Models are essential tools for understanding and predicting bacterial kinetics and are necessary to predict the dose of organisms post-exposure that results in a skin infection. One of the challenges in modeling bacterial kinetics is the estimation of model parameters, which can be addressed using an inverse problem approach. The objective of this study is to construct a microbial kinetic model of S. aureus on human skin and use the model to predict concentrations of S. aureus that result in human infection. In order to model the growth and decay of S. aureus on skin, a Gompertz inactivation model was coupled with a Gompertz growth model. A series of analyses, including ordinary least squares regression, scaled sensitivity coefficient analysis, residual analysis, and parameter correlation analysis were conducted to estimate the parameters and to describe the model uncertainty. Based on these analyses, the proposed model parameters were estimated with high accuracy. The model was then used to develop a new dose-response model for S. aureus using the exponential dose-response model. The new S. aureus model has an optimized k parameter equivalent to 8.05 × 10-8 with 95th percentile confidence intervals between 6.46 × 10-8 and 1.00 × 10-7.


Gompertz model; S. aureus; dose-response; growth and decay; inverse problem

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