Exploring the dynamics of Mexico’s H1N1 pandemic

February 24, 2010

Influenza surveillance mechanisms in Mexico were adequate during the fast-spreading H1N1 outbreak in 2009, yet Mexico did not have the infrastructure to quickly identify the emergence of this novel strain, according to an Arizona State University epidemiologist.

Carlos Castillo-Chavez, director of ASU’s Mathematical, Computational and Modeling Sciences Center in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, took a close look at factors impacting the influenza dynamics within Mexico during a presentation Feb. 21 at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Castillo-Chavez’s presentation, “Life in the Fast Lane: H1N1 Pandemic Dynamics in Mexico’s Central Influenza Corridor,” is part of a session of how mathematics is used for investigating biological hierarchies. Download Full Image

“Mexico public health officials took immediate and massive social-distancing measures during the initial outbreak that were effective, but only over a short-time scale,” Castillo-Chavez said. “But the second wave hit Mexico and the rate of infections exceeded those over the months of April through June 2009. The combination of large movements of people in Mexico’s central influenza corridor and past strict social-distancing measures seemed to have had a dramatic effect on the ongoing influenza dynamics within Mexico. Fortunately, disease severity has not been as devastating as in past pandemics.”

In his analysis of Mexico’s response to the H1N1 virus and the dynamics surrounding the influenza outbreak, Castillo-Chavez addressed a number of lingering questions, including whether social-distancing measures (no longer in effect) combined with summer school breaks not only slowed down the first wave, but could have resulted in a less manageable second wave.

He also broke down what was learned from Mexico’s experience to answer such questions as: Is the lack of advanced diagnostic facilities and uniform surveillance systems, common in poor nations, “good” for the rest of the world? What will be the impact of the limited access that the have-nots (individuals or nations) have to adequate supplies of antiviral drugs and the H1N1 vaccine on the dynamics of H1N1? What are the optimal public health policies for non-wealthy nations?

Castillo-Chavez is a Regents’ Professor and the Joaquin Bustoz Jr. Professor of Mathematical Biology in ASU’s School of Human Evolution and Social Change. He is an AAAS Fellow and recipient of the 2007 AAAS Mentor Award. His research is carried out at the interface of the mathematical, natural and social sciences and puts emphasis on the role of dynamic social landscapes on disease dispersal; the role of behavior on disease evolution; the role of behavior, environmental and social structures on the dynamics of addiction; and the identification of mechanisms that facilitate the spread of diseases across multiple levels of organization.

Scott Southward, scott.southward">mailto:scott.southward@asu.edu">scott.southward@asu.edu
School of Human Evolution and Social Change

Carol Hughes, carol.hughes">mailto:carol.hughes@asu.edu">carol.hughes@asu.edu

Registrations open for Camp Broadway

February 24, 2010

Camp Broadway, a performing arts summer camp for theater-loving kids ages 10 to 17, is headed back to ASU Gammage June 14-18, for its 15th year. 

Camp sells out every year, so reserve your child’s spot today by calling 480-965-5062. Download Full Image

Campers work collaboratively with Broadway’s most distinguished performers, writers and designers and will have a chance to see Tony-Award winning musical "In the Heights" and meet the cast and crew. Camp tuition is $600 and includes the weeklong training, lunch and snacks daily, a behind-the-scenes tour of ASU Gammage and a ticket to "In the Heights."

Camp Broadway gives young people an introduction to Broadway – on stage and behind the scenes. Camp classes include acting, scene study, improvisation, music theory, singing and dancing. The camp fosters teamwork, discipline, commitment and support while introducing kids to the world of Broadway and all aspects of putting a show together in a professional, interactive and theatrical environment. The weeklong day camp culminates in a final performance, the "Family Finale."

Brian Goldsberry, a Camp Broadway alumni camper, attended Camp Broadway for seven summers and describes Camp Broadway as “an amazing experience you can’t get anywhere else.”

"In the Heights," winner of four 2008 Tony® Awards including Best Musical, is a sensational new show about chasing your dreams and finding your true home. With an amazing cast, incredible Tony® Award-winning dancing and a thrilling Tony® Award-winning score, "In the Heights" is an exhilarating journey into a vibrant Manhattan community – a place where the coffee is light and sweet, the windows are always open and the breeze carries the rhythm of three generations of music.

The camp is intended for kids of all interests, and enthusiasm is the only requirement, no theater experience is needed.

"We introduce classic Broadway to new generations, so that we can keep live theater alive," said Tony Parise, artistic director of Camp Broadway. "Broadway theater has a unique heritage. Around the world, 'Broadway' means a distinctive sense of excitement and magic. It is this one-of-a-kind spirit that drives Camp Broadway."

For more information, or to reserve your child’s spot, call 480-965-5062.

About ASU Gammage

Located on the Tempe campus of Arizona State University, ASU Gammage is among the largest university-based presenters of performing arts in the world. ASU Gammage is the home theater of PROGRESSIVE® Broadway Across America – Arizona and Beyond series. Its mission is connecting communities by providing artistic excellence and educational outreach to the public. ASU Gammage is an historic hall designed by internationally renowned architect Frank Lloyd Wright.