Society for Mathematical Biology Mini-Symposia

In 2021, the Society for Mathematical Biology will be holding its annual meeting online. This year, three of our members within the Melbourne Mathematical Biology (MMB) group have organised a mini-symposia (details below), which are being supported by the Special Emphasis Year, Biological Dynamics: Mathematics of Cellular Systems to Epidemics“.

Date: June 13 – 17, 2021

MMB members can register here by Friday May 21st 2021 to receive a fee waiver.


Mini-symposia titles and abstracts


Title: Collaboration and calibration: modelling with experimental and clinical data

Abstract: An ongoing challenge in mathematical and computational modelling is model validation and uncertainty quantification. Model calibration in the absence of rich clinical and experimental data relies on synthetic data, in turn adding different problems to solve. Conversely, clinical and experimental data can be so voluminous that it can be difficult to manage, interpret and use the data. Even where data allows for model calibration, uncertainty is often not analysed or reported. Without validation and uncertainty analysis, mathematical and computational models may not be clinically or experimentally applicable nor relevant. To help overcome this, there needs to be continual collaboration between clinicians, experimentalists, and modellers. This mini-symposium presents work across different fields and scales to highlight the range of experimental and clinical data available and how they can be best used in conjunction with mathematical modelling. Topics covered in this mini-symposium include angiogenesis, colon cancer, tumor modelling, ischemic heart conditions, lung disease, placental vasculature, HIV reactivation, and drug response.


Organisers: Adriana Zanca, A/Prof. Jennifer Flegg, Prof. Helen Byrne


Speakers: Alison Betts, A/Prof. Allison Lewis, A/Prof. Leili Shahriyari, Min Song, Yuhuang Wu, Vijayalakshmi Srinivasan, Dr. Claire Miller, Wafaa Mansoor



Title: Mathematical Modelling that Supported Australia and New Zealand’s COVID-19 Responses

Abstract: Speakers in this symposium have all used mathematical modelling to support Australia and New Zealand’s COVID-19 responses. Their work has provided scientific advice to the highest levels of government and has contributed to Australia and New Zealand’s relative success in suppressing COVID-19. In this symposium speakers will discuss their modelling work and it’s impact on the COVID-19 response. We will hear how mathematical modelling was used to provide situational assessment, support government intervention strategies and protect vulnerable communities.


Organisers: Dr. James Walker


Speakers: Dr. Emily Harvey, Dr. Rebecca Chisholm, Dr. Freya Shearer, Prof. Michael Plank



Title: Mathematical models of vascular biology

Abstract: Mathematical models of the vascular system are a pivotal component of mathematical biology woven between many important areas of the field, including developmental biology, oncology, drug development, tissue engineering, regenerative medicine, and more. The approach one takes to model the vascular system will vary depending on the biological question at hand and the translational application of the model. This mini-symposium aims to bring together mathematicians modelling the vascular system from different areas of biology, using different modelling strategies and with different perspectives to share their important research in a lively and diverse forum. In doing so, we are encouraging the integration and dissemination of new modelling techniques, knowledge and data between the different facets of mathematical vascular biology, which ultimately promotes the translation of vascular mathematical biology to clinically applicable outcomes.


Organisers: Jessica Crawshaw, Dr. James Osborne, Dr. Lowell Edgar


Speakers: Dr. Fabian Spill, A/Prof. Katie Bently, Dr. Mike Watson, A/Prof. Alys Clark, Dr. Richard Clarke, Daria Stepanova, Dr. Lowell Edgar, Jessica Crawshaw