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Inoculum size, immune responses, and nonlinear host-virus interactions

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

2:30pm – 3:45pm

Virtual via zoom (register by clicking here), Virginia Tech Campus

Stanca Ciupe

Department of Mathematics

Virginia Tech 


Experimental studies have shown that immune protection and disease severity do not correlate linearly with the size and infectious-stage of viral inoculum. Using mathematical models in connection with data one can better represent the relationship between the inoculum dose and disease outcome. In this talk, I will present two case studies: simian immunodeficiency virus infection in rhesus macaques and hepatitis B virus infection in non-human primates and use them to provide hypotheses on when different inoculum doses trigger immune responses that provide protection, induce immune tolerance and chronic disease, and/or lead to pathogenesis. Such results can guide our understanding of the virus-host dynamics that control virus infections or permit a transition to chronic disease.


Stanca Ciupe is an associate professor in the Mathematics Department at Virginia Tech. She received a Ph.D in Applied and Interdisciplinary Mathematics from University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, followed by postdoctoral positions at Los Alamos National Labs/Santa Fe Institute and at Duke University Medical Center. Before joining us in 2011, she was an assistant professor in the Mathematics Department at University of Louisiana at Lafayette. She is an associate editor for Journal of Theoretical Biology and Bulletin of Mathematical Biology. She is interested in modeling infectious diseases at multiple scales, and specializes in modeling immune dynamics of virus infections.