Matching Items (5)

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Modeling Brain Tumors: Simulating individual Patient Cases of Glioblastoma Multiforme

Description

Glioblastoma multiforme (GBMs) is the most prevalent brain tumor type and causes approximately 40% of all non-metastic primary tumors in adult patients [1]. GBMs are malignant, grade-4 brain tumors, the

Glioblastoma multiforme (GBMs) is the most prevalent brain tumor type and causes approximately 40% of all non-metastic primary tumors in adult patients [1]. GBMs are malignant, grade-4 brain tumors, the most aggressive classication as established by the World Health Organization and are marked by their low survival rate; the median survival time is only twelve months from initial diagnosis: Patients who live more than three years are considered long-term survivors [2]. GBMs are highly invasive and their diffusive growth pattern makes it impossible to remove the tumors by surgery alone [3]. The purpose of this paper is to use individual patient data to parameterize a model of GBMs that allows for data on tumor growth and development to be captured on a clinically relevant time scale. Such an endeavor is the rst step to a clinically applicable predictions of GBMs. Previous research has yielded models that adequately represent the development of GBMs, but they have not attempted to follow specic patient cases through the entire tumor process. Using the model utilized by Kostelich et al. [4], I will attempt to redress this deciency. In doing so, I will improve upon a family of models that can be used to approximate the time of development and/or structure evolution in GBMs. The eventual goal is to incorporate Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) data into a parameterized model of GBMs in such a way that it can be used clinically to predict tumor growth and behavior. Furthermore, I hope to come to a denitive conclusion as to the accuracy of the Koteslich et al. model throughout the development of GBMs tumors.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012-12

The effect of social preferences on the evolution of cooperation in public good games

Description

Human societies are unique in the level of cooperation among non-kin. Evolutionary models explaining this behavior typically assume pure strategies of cooperation and defection. Behavioral experiments, however, demonstrate that humans

Human societies are unique in the level of cooperation among non-kin. Evolutionary models explaining this behavior typically assume pure strategies of cooperation and defection. Behavioral experiments, however, demonstrate that humans are typically conditional co-operators who have other-regarding preferences. Building on existing models on the evolution of cooperation and costly punishment, we use a utilitarian formulation of agent decision making to explore conditions that support the emergence of cooperative behavior. Our results indicate that cooperation levels are significantly lower for larger groups in contrast to the original pure strategy model. Here, defection behavior not only diminishes the public good, but also affects the expectations of group members leading conditional co-operators to change their strategies. Hence defection has a more damaging effect when decisions are based on expectations and not only pure strategies.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2014-07-01

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Identifying robustness in the regulation of collective foraging of ant colonies using an interaction-based model with backward bifurcation

Description

Collective behaviors in social insect societies often emerge from simple local rules. However, little is known about how these behaviors are dynamically regulated in response to environmental changes. Here, we

Collective behaviors in social insect societies often emerge from simple local rules. However, little is known about how these behaviors are dynamically regulated in response to environmental changes. Here, we use a compartmental modeling approach to identify factors that allow harvester ant colonies to regulate collective foraging activity in response to their environment. We propose a set of differential equations describing the dynamics of: (1) available foragers inside the nest, (2) active foragers outside the nest, and (3) successful returning foragers, to understand how colony-specific parameters, such as baseline number of foragers, interactions among foragers, food discovery rates, successful forager return rates, and foraging duration might influence collective foraging dynamics, while maintaining functional robustness to perturbations. Our analysis indicates that the model can undergo a forward (transcritical) bifurcation or a backward bifurcation depending on colony-specific parameters. In the former case, foraging activity persists when the average number of recruits per successful returning forager is larger than one. In the latter case, the backward bifurcation creates a region of bistability in which the size and fate of foraging activity depends on the distribution of the foraging workforce among the model׳s compartments. We validate the model with experimental data from harvester ants (Pogonomyrmex barbatus) and perform sensitivity analysis. Our model provides insights on how simple, local interactions can achieve an emergent and robust regulatory system of collective foraging activity in ant colonies.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2015-02-21

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A novel approach to study task organization in animal groups

Description

A key factor in the success of social animals is their organization of work. Mathematical models have been instrumental in unraveling how simple, individual-based rules can generate collective patterns via

A key factor in the success of social animals is their organization of work. Mathematical models have been instrumental in unraveling how simple, individual-based rules can generate collective patterns via self-organization. However, existing models offer limited insights into how these patterns are shaped by behavioral differences within groups, in part because they focus on analyzing specific rules rather than general mechanisms that can explain behavior at the individual-level. My work argues for a more principled approach that focuses on the question of how individuals make decisions in costly environments.

In Chapters 2 and 3, I demonstrate how this approach provides novel insights into factors that shape the flexibility and robustness of task organization in harvester ant colonies (Pogonomyrmex barbatus). My results show that the degree to which colonies can respond to work in fluctuating environments depends on how individuals weigh the costs of activity and update their behavior in response to social information. In Chapter 4, I introduce a mathematical framework to study the emergence of collective organization in heterogenous groups. My approach, which is based on the theory of multi-agent systems, focuses on myopic agents whose behavior emerges out of an independent valuation of alternative choices in a given work environment. The product of this dynamic is an equilibrium organization in which agents perform different tasks (or abstain from work) with an analytically defined set of threshold probabilities. The framework is minimally developed, but can be extended to include other factors known to affect task decisions including individual experience and social facilitation. This research contributes a novel approach to developing (and analyzing) models of task organization that can be applied in a broader range of contexts where animals cooperate.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2016

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Patterns in Knowledge Production

Description

This dissertation will look at large scale collaboration through the lens of online communities to answer questions about what makes a collaboration persist. Results address how collaborations attract contributions, behaviors

This dissertation will look at large scale collaboration through the lens of online communities to answer questions about what makes a collaboration persist. Results address how collaborations attract contributions, behaviors that could give rise to patterns seen in the data, and the properties of collaborations that drive those behaviors.

It is understood that collaborations, online and otherwise, must retain users to remain productive. However, before users can be retained they must be recruited. In the first project, a few necessary properties of the ``attraction'' function are identified by constraining the dynamics of an ODE (Ordinary Differential Equation) model. Additionally, more than 100 communities of the Stack Exchange networks are parameterized and their distributions reported.

Collaborations do not exist in a vacuum, they compete with and share users with other collaborations. To address this, the second project focuses on an agent-based model (ABM) of a community of online collaborations using a mechanistic approach. The ABM is compared to data obtained from the Stack Exchange network and produces similar distributional patterns.

The third project is a thorough sensitivity analysis of the model created in the second project. A variance based sensitivity analysis is performed to evaluate the relative importance of 21 parameters of the model. Results indicate that population parameters impact many outcome metrics, though even those parameters that tend towards a low impact can be crucial for some outcomes.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2017