Department of Biology, University of Missouri–St. Louis

Latest update: 2020-11-11


Introduction

We are developing graphical tools, real-time metrics, and statistical analyses to better monitor local outbreaks of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19. Epidemiological population dynamics can be complicated and unintuitive, and conventional case reporting often fails to capture more than the gross outlines of outbreak behavior. As research microbiologists, we want to look at data and see more than a curve that goes up. Mathematical models are useful tools, but it can be difficult to assess what assumptions they make, how reasonable those assumptions are, an how well they capture the behavior of real outbreaks. Models are no substitute for data.


New cases

The number of new reported COVID-19 cases lets us estimate how prevalent the SARS-CoV-2 virus is: