Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: December 1, 2011
Publication Date: February 4, 2012
Citation: Eda, S., Lenhart, S., Stabel, J.R., Bannantine, J.P., Gardner, I., Schukken, Y. 2012. Investigative workshop for mathematical modeling of Johne's disease epidemiology and immunology [abstract]. 11th International Colloquium on Paratuberculosis. p. 106. Technical Abstract: Despite long and intensive national-level efforts for Johne’s disease (JD) control, we are still far from preventing the significant economic impact of this formidable disease. One of the major reasons for the continuing struggle with JD is that there are many unknown factors in JD epidemiology and immunology. For example, we do not properly understand the host immune responses to MAP that lead to persistence and sudden exacerbation of the infection. Since the early ’90, mathematical modeling approaches have been applied for better understanding of JD epidemiology and for estimation of the cost-benefit of alternative JD control strategies. However, there has not previously been an opportunity to gather a multidisciplinary group of scientists to help facilitate mathematical modeling studies in JD. Further, there has been no mathematical modeling approach for studying the immunology of JD. We organized an investigative workshop for mathematical modelling of JD epidemiology and immunology (July 6-8, 2011). The workshop was hosted by the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Systems (NIMBioS) at the University of Tennessee Knoxville. The objectives of the workshop were to gather diverse groups of scientists for facilitation of interdisciplinary discussions on the mathematical modeling of MAP epidemiology, to establish an initiative in mathematical modeling for immunology of JD and to investigate methods for linking the epidemiology and immunology models. Total of 40 participants including 11 international scholars attended the workshop. In the first two days, 11 presentations were made on epidemiology, immunology and their mathematical models, followed by breakout sessions to discuss challenges, opportunities, and future directions for each objective of the workshop. On the last day, two scientific presentations were made, concluding remark presented for each objective, and whole group discussion was held. In addition, the Directors of the NIMBioS and JD Integrated Program presented a possible link between the two agencies. Through the workshop, new mathematical models were proposed, new research opportunities emerged, and future activities/goals identified. We plan to put together a proposal for NIMBioS Working Group to continue this initiative. More detailed information of the workshop will be presented.