One of the central goals of mathematical epidemiology is to predict disease transmission patterns in populations. Two models are commonly used to predict spatial spread of a disease. The first is the distributed-contacts model, often described by a contact distribution among stationary individuals. The second is the distributed-infectives model, often described by the diffusion of infected individuals. However, neither approach is ideal when individuals move within home ranges. This paper presents a unified modeling hypothesis, called the restricted-movement model. We use this model to predict spatial spread in settings where infected individuals move within overlapping home ranges. Using mathematical and computational approaches, we show that our restricted-movement model has three limits: the distributed-contacts model, the distributed- infectives model, and a third, less studied advective distributed-infectives limit. We also calculate approximate upper bounds for the rates of an epidemic's spatial spread. Guidelines are suggested for determining which limit is most appropriate for a specific disease.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Environmental Science(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
- Computational Theory and Mathematics