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Assessing the effects of multiple infections and long latency in the dynamics of tuberculosis

Authors
Journal
Theoretical Biology and Medical Modelling
1742-4682
Publisher
Springer (Biomed Central Ltd.)
Publication Date
Volume
7
Issue
1
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1186/1742-4682-7-41
Keywords
  • Research

Abstract

In order to achieve a better understanding of multiple infections and long latency in the dynamics of Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection, we analyze a simple model. Since backward bifurcation is well documented in the literature with respect to the model we are considering, our aim is to illustrate this behavior in terms of the range of variations of the model's parameters. We show that backward bifurcation disappears (and forward bifurcation occurs) if: (a) the latent period is shortened below a critical value; and (b) the rates of super-infection and re-infection are decreased. This result shows that among immunosuppressed individuals, super-infection and/or changes in the latent period could act to facilitate the onset of tuberculosis. When we decrease the incubation period below the critical value, we obtain the curve of the incidence of tuberculosis following forward bifurcation; however, this curve envelops that obtained from the backward bifurcation diagram.

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