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Harvard School of Public Health

Marc Lipsitch, D. Phil., Principal Investigator

The Harvard School of Public Health MIDAS team will develop methodological approaches for the planning and analysis of new infectious diseases. The goal of this work is to design tools that will aid in understanding and generalizing the output of computationally complex models of disease transmission.

The researchers will develop methods to characterize a newly introduced disease in real time during the early phases of spread. They also will develop and evaluate methods for estimating the instantaneous reproductive number of the infection, the effectiveness of control measures and the time course of infectiousness from the onset of symptoms.

The team will build mathematical models to optimize the response to an emerging disease before the onset of sustained human-to-human transmission, as well as during the early stages of human-to-human spread of the disease. One focus will be on how to target limited supplies of medication or vaccines for maximum control or containment.

The research team will also develop mathematical modeling tools that capture the key features of realistic disease transmission networks in models of intermediate complexity and spatially explicit, village-week level prediction models for annual epidemic malaria to optimize the timing of epidemic alerts for prevention.

Co-Principal Investigators: Jacco Wallinga, Ph.D., of the Harvard School of Public Health and the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, the Netherlands; James Robins, M.D., of the Harvard School of Public Health; and Carl Bergstrom, Ph.D., of the University of Washington in Seattle.
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This page last reviewed on August 19, 2011