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2.
Neurocomputing ; 2021.
Article in English | ScienceDirect | ID: covidwho-1474919

ABSTRACT

The outbreak of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has now spread throughout the globe infecting over 150 million people and causing the death of over 3.2 million people. Thus, there is an urgent need to study the dynamics of epidemiological models to gain a better understanding of how such diseases spread. While epidemiological models can be computationally expensive, recent advances in machine learning techniques have given rise to neural networks with the ability to learn and predict complex dynamics at reduced computational costs. Here we introduce two digital twins of a SEIRS model applied to an idealised town. The SEIRS model has been modified to take account of spatial variation and, where possible, the model parameters are based on official virus spreading data from the UK. We compare predictions from one digital twin based on a data-corrected Bidirectional Long Short- Term Memory network with predictions from another digital twin based on a predictive Generative Adversarial Network. The predictions given by these two frameworks are accurate when compared to the original SEIRS model data. Additionally, these frameworks are data-agnostic and could be applied to towns, idealised or real, in the UK or in other countries. Also, more compartments could be included in the SEIRS model, in order to study more realistic epidemiological behaviour.

3.
JMIR Res Protoc ; 10(5): e25556, 2021 May 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1221875

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Recent studies have revealed that many discharged patients with COVID-19 experience ongoing symptoms months later. Rehabilitation interventions can help address the consequences of COVID-19, including medical, physical, cognitive, and psychological problems. To our knowledge, no studies have investigated the effects of rehabilitation following discharge from hospital for patients with COVID-19. OBJECTIVE: The specific aims of this project are to investigate the effects of a 12-week exercise program on pulmonary fibrosis in patients recovering from COVID-19. A further aim will be to examine how Chinese herbal medicines as well as the gut microbiome and its metabolites regulate immune function and possibly autoimmune deficiency in the rehabilitation process. METHODS: In this triple-blinded, randomized, parallel-group, controlled clinical trial, we will recruit adult patients with COVID-19 who have been discharged from hospital in Hong Kong and are experiencing impaired lung function and pulmonary function. A total of 172 eligible patients will be randomized into four equal groups: (1) cardiorespiratory exercise plus Chinese herbal medicines group, (2) cardiorespiratory exercise only group, (3) Chinese herbal medicines only group, and (4) waiting list group (in which participants will receive Chinese herbal medicines after 24 weeks). These treatments will be administered for 12 weeks, with a 12-week follow-up period. Primary outcomes include dyspnea, fatigue, lung function, pulmonary function, blood oxygen levels, immune function, blood coagulation, and related blood biochemistry. Measurements will be recorded prior to initiating the above treatments and repeated at the 13th and 25th weeks of the study. The primary analysis is aimed at comparing the outcomes between groups throughout the study period with an α level of .05 (two-tailed). RESULTS: The trial has been approved by the university ethics committee following the Declaration of Helsinki (approval number: REC/19-20/0504) in 2020. The trial has been recruiting patients. The data collection will be completed in 24 months, from January 1, 2021, to December 31, 2022. CONCLUSIONS: Given that COVID-19 and its sequelae would persist in human populations, important findings from this study would provide valuable insights into the mechanisms and processes of COVID-19 rehabilitation. TRIAL REGISTRATION: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT04572360; https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT04572360. INTERNATIONAL REGISTERED REPORT IDENTIFIER (IRRID): PRR1-10.2196/25556.

4.
BMC Public Health ; 21(1): 723, 2021 04 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1183520

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The global spread of the COVID-19 pandemic has become the most fundamental threat to human health. In the absence of vaccines and effective therapeutical solutions, non-pharmaceutic intervention has become a major way for controlling the epidemic. Gentle mitigation interventions are able to slow down the epidemic but not to halt it well. While strict suppression interventions are efficient for controlling the epidemic, long-term measures are likely to have negative impacts on economics and people's daily live. Hence, dynamically balancing suppression and mitigation interventions plays a fundamental role in manipulating the epidemic curve. METHODS: We collected data of the number of infections for several countries during the COVID-19 pandemics and found a clear phenomenon of periodic waves of infection. Based on the observation, by connecting the infection level with the medical resources and a tolerance parameter, we propose a mathematical model to understand impacts of combining intervention measures on the epidemic dynamics. RESULTS: Depending on the parameters of the medical resources, tolerance level, and the starting time of interventions, the combined intervention measure dynamically changes with the infection level, resulting in a periodic wave of infections controlled below an accepted level. The study reveals that, (a) with an immediate, strict suppression, the numbers of infections and deaths are well controlled with a significant reduction in a very short time period; (b) an appropriate, dynamical combination of suppression and mitigation may find a feasible way in reducing the impacts of epidemic on people's live and economics. CONCLUSIONS: While the assumption of interventions deployed with a cycle of period in the model is limited and unrealistic, the phenomenon of periodic waves of infections in reality is captured by our model. These results provide helpful insights for policy-makers to dynamically deploy an appropriate intervention strategy to effectively battle against the COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Models, Theoretical , Pandemics/prevention & control , Communicable Disease Control , Humans
5.
Meteorological Applications ; 28(2):e1985, 2021.
Article in English | Wiley | ID: covidwho-1151950

ABSTRACT

Abstract COVID-19 is spreading rapidly worldwide, posing great threats to public health and economy. This study aims to examine how the transmission of COVID-19 is modulated by climate conditions, which is of great importance for better understanding of the seasonal feature of COVID-19. Constrained by the accurate observations we can make, the basic reproduction numbers (R0) for each country were inferred and linked to temperature and relative humidity (RH) with statistical analysis. Using R0 as the measure of COVID-19 transmission potential, we find stronger transmission of COVID-19 under mildly warm (0°C?< T <?20°C) and humid (RH?>?60%) climate conditions, while extremely low (T <??2°C) and high (T >?20°C) temperature or a dry climate (RH?<?60%) weakens transmission. The established nonlinear relationships between COVID-19 transmission and climate conditions suggest that seasonal climate variability may affect the spread and severity of COVID-19 infection, and temperate coastal regions with mildly warm and humid climate would be susceptible to large-scale outbreaks.

7.
Ieee Computational Intelligence Magazine ; 15(4):23-33, 2020.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-900842

ABSTRACT

Epidemic models play a key role in understanding and responding to the emerging COVID-19 pandemic. Widely used compartmental models are static and are of limited use to evaluate intervention strategies of combatting the pandemic. Applying the technology of data assimilation, we propose a Bayesian updating approach for estimating epidemiological parameters using observable information to assess the impacts of different intervention strategies. We adopt a concise renewal model and propose new parameters by disentangling the reduction of instantaneous reproduction number Rt into mitigation and suppression factors to quantify intervention impacts at a finer granularity. A data assimilation framework is developed to estimate these parameters including constructing an observation function and developing a Bayesian updating scheme. A statistical analysis framework is built to quantify the impacts of intervention strategies by monitoring the evolution of the estimated parameters. We reveal the intervention impacts in European countries and Wuhan and the resurgence risk in the United States.

8.
Preprint | SSRN | ID: ppcovidwho-1311

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 is spreading worldwide rapidly, posing great threats to public health and economy. This study aims to examine how the transmission of COVID-19 is modul

9.
Eur J Epidemiol ; 35(8): 749-761, 2020 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-743740

ABSTRACT

The global pandemic of the 2019-nCov requires the evaluation of policy interventions to mitigate future social and economic costs of quarantine measures worldwide. We propose an epidemiological model for forecasting and policy evaluation which incorporates new data in real-time through variational data assimilation. We analyze and discuss infection rates in the UK, US and Italy. We furthermore develop a custom compartmental SIR model fit to variables related to the available data of the pandemic, named SITR model, which allows for more granular inference on infection numbers. We compare and discuss model results which conducts updates as new observations become available. A hybrid data assimilation approach is applied to make results robust to initial conditions and measurement errors in the data. We use the model to conduct inference on infection numbers as well as parameters such as the disease transmissibility rate or the rate of recovery. The parameterisation of the model is parsimonious and extendable, allowing for the incorporation of additional data and parameters of interest. This allows for scalability and the extension of the model to other locations or the adaption of novel data sources.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Forecasting , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Public Health Informatics/methods , Bayes Theorem , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Computer Simulation , Disease Outbreaks , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Models, Biological , Models, Statistical , Quarantine , SARS-CoV-2 , United Kingdom/epidemiology , United States/epidemiology
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