Title: Exploring Phage Treatment for Bacterial Infections with Mathematical Modeling
Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a serious threat to global health today. A renewed interest in phage therapy – the use of bacteriophages to treat pathogenic bacterial infections – has emerged given the spread of AMR and lack of new drug classes in the antibiotic pipeline. This talk will feature mathematical models from an ongoing research project that began in 2019 during the Collaborative Workshop for Women in Mathematical Biology at IPAM. The first model considers the effect of phage-antibiotic combination therapy. We utilized this model to examine the role of the immune response in concert with phage-antibiotic combination therapy compounded with the effects of the immune system on the phages being used for treatment. We will then discuss our current work as we collaborate with an experimental biologist. This model investigates the bacteria-phage interaction in vitro. We will discuss how our model has given insights into the challenges that arise from limited information in clinical trials, and the delightful experience of how experimental biologists and applied mathematicians provide guidance to each other to move the project forward.