A new center that will focus on mathematical modeling of drug resistance, seasonal infectious diseases, and intervention allocation will be established, announced the Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) in early September. The Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics will be funded through the National Institutes of Health’s Models of Infectious Disease Agent Study (MIDAS), which is aiming to increase capacity to model disease spread, evaluate different intervention strategies, and help inform public health officials and policymakers.

Marc Lipsitch, HSPH professor of epidemiology, will lead the center. He is a noted expert in modeling infectious disease outbreaks and has been tapped by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology to help guide policy in the current H1N1 flu outbreak. He also helped lead the development of a model to quantify and predict the spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in 2003.

The expected funding total for the Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics at HSPH is approximately $15.6 million over five years.

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