Understanding epidemics from mathematical models: Details of the 2010 dengue epidemic in Bello (Antioquia, Colombia)


Dengue is the most threatening vector-borne viral disease in Colombia. At the moment, there is no treatment or vaccine available for its control or prevention; therefore, the main measure is to exert control over mosquito population. To reduce the economic impact of control measures, it is important to focus on specific characteristics related to local dengue epidemiology at the local level, and know the main factors involved in an epidemic. To this end, we used a mathematical model based on ordinary differential equations and experimental data regarding mosquito populations from Bello (Antioquia, Colombia) to simulate the epidemic occurred in 2010. The results showed that the parameters to which the incidence of dengue cases are most sensitive are the biting and mortality rates of adult mosquitoes as well as the virus transmission probabilities. Finally, we found that the Basic Reproductive Number (R0) of this epidemic was between 1.5 and 2.7, with an infection force (?) of 0.061, meaning that R0 values slightly above one are sufficient to result in a significant dengue outbreak in this region. © 2016 Elsevier Inc.


Palabras clave

Differential equations, Epidemiology, Mathematical models, Ordinary differential equations, Population statistics, Viruses, Basic reproductive number, Control measures, Dengue epidemic, Economic impacts, Infection force, Mosquito populations, Reproductive basic number, Virus transmission, Disease control