H1N1 influenza pandemic modeling for public health action

July 20, 2009

Mathematical modelling can help inform public health policy in outbreaks such as the H1N1 pandemic, write members of the Pandemic Influenza Outbreak Research Modelling Team in Canada in a CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal) article http://www.cmaj.ca/press/cmaj090885.pdf. These models are useful tools for simulating plausible scenarios, developing control strategies and identifying important areas for immediate research.

The Outbreak Research Modelling Team has helped characterize the epidemiology of the new H1N1 flu strain and advised on control strategies such as the use of and school closures.

Mathematical models have shown that small seasonal variations in transmission of the influenza virus can drive large annual surges in the disease. Based on patterns of the 1918 influenza, models indicate that the H1N1 virus could become more severe in the fall. "Such models raise concern regarding the potential for the news S-OIV strain to cause serious epidemics in the near term in the southern hemisphere: South American countries, Australia and New Zealand will enter their upcoming influenza season without a vaccine against this strain," write Dr. David Fisman and coauthors.

The authors conclude that "making these models better understood and more accessible will provide a valuable additional weapon in the fight against emerging infectious diseases."

In a related article, Canada's first human-to-human transmission of the H1N1 virus is presented in a research case study http://www.cmaj.ca/press/cmaj090859.pdf. The article looks at the cluster of cases in Nova Scotia in April 2009 and outlines transmission, diagnostic testing and public health measures to control the outbreak.

Source: (news : web)

Explore further: Vaccine protects mice from 1918 flu virus

Related Stories

Proton pump inhibitors increase risk of bone fractures

August 12, 2008

Patients who use proton pump inhibitors for 7 or more years to treat reflux, peptic ulcers and other conditions are at greater risk of osteoporosis-related fractures, according to this large observational study of 15,792 ...

Electronic tracking system can help diabetes patient care

July 6, 2009

An electronic system with personalized patient information shared by diabetes patients and their primary care providers improved diabetes care and clinical outcomes, found a new study in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association ...

Recommended for you

How the finch changes its tune

August 3, 2015

Like top musicians, songbirds train from a young age to weed out errors and trim variability from their songs, ultimately becoming consistent and reliable performers. But as with human musicians, even the best are not machines. ...

Machine Translates Thoughts into Speech in Real Time

December 21, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- By implanting an electrode into the brain of a person with locked-in syndrome, scientists have demonstrated how to wirelessly transmit neural signals to a speech synthesizer. The "thought-to-speech" process ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.