Project Team Anubis

Overall Objectives
Scientific Foundations
Application Domains
New Results
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Section: Scientific Foundations

Structured population modeling

The introduction of one or several structuring variables is important when one wants to more precisely describe the evolution of populations. Besides large time behavior this concerns transient behaviors, e.g., describing epidemic curves at the onset of an epidemic or the initial development of cell growth and tumors. It also depends on the final goals of modeling, i.e., mathematical analysis, numerical simulations or experiments, or both.

Spatial structures are widely used to assess the impact of heterogeneities or variable local densities in population dynamics, cf. [3] . This leads to systems of reaction diffusion for continuous models, or to networks of systems of ordinary differential equations in the discrete case. Discrete spatial models are also in order, cf. [12] , [13] . A new set of models is dedicated towards analyzing the transmission of parasites between populations distributed over distinct spatial models.

Multimodeling techniques could be useful when the model changes from one region to another. Methods presented in section 3.3 could then be used to give interface conditions.

In demography the most significant variable is the chronological age of individuals, cf. [27] , [31] . This age-structure although already intensively studied in our team in the past, cf. [2] , [8] ,[14] , will be central in our future research. Discrete age structures are also in order.

Lot of models in epidemiology couple spatial and age structures to take care of the spreading rate of individuals together with the vital dynamics of the population. This structuration can lead to complex patterns formation and waves. A new problem we would like to investigate is the propagation phenomenom that, like in the classical reaction-diffusion framework, arises due to travelling waves. More specifically the description of the wave speed in function of the demography characteristics of the population is of particular interest for biologists.

In addition to spatial and age variables, other continuous structuring variables will be considered, i.e., size of individuals (fishing), weight, age of the disease for an infected individuals, cf.[8] .

For interacting populations or subpopulations additional discrete structures can be put forth. In the study of disease propagation (microparasites) usually a structure linked to the health status or parasitic state of individuals in the host population is used, i.e., SIS, SIR, SIRS, SEIRS models.

In previous works, rather strong assumptions were made on demographic and diffusion coefficients (e.g. identical or independent of age) to obtain qualitative results. In recent works it becomes possible to weaken these conditions, cf. [1] .

With M. Iannelli, we intend to study the impact of the spatial location (developed or underdeveloped country) on the propagation of an infectious disease (tuberculosis, AIDS ...). Then we have to model the way that the infectiveness rate or the recovery rate, which are dependent on the location, influence the dynamics of the infected population.

Various ways can be experienced. In a first approach we could assume that individuals are randomly distributed in space, cf. [3] , [5] . We would obtain a reaction-diffusion system whose reaction term would depend on space. In an alternate approach we could define patches where the population dynamics is governed by ordinary differential equation yielding large size systems of ODEs, cf. [9] .