Seminar looks at HIV transmission

Two distinguished researchers will talk about the spread of HIV as the York Institute for Health Research hosts the first seminar on infectious disease organized by MITACS (Mathematics of Information Technology and Complex Systems) next week.

Abba Gumel Prabhat Jha
The seminar features Abba Gumel, director of the Institute of Industrial Mathematical Sciences at the University of Manitoba, and Dr. Prabhat Jha, Canada Research Chair of Health and Development and director of the Centre for Global Health Research at the University of Toronto. The two one-hour talks will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 6, in room 444A Health, Nursing & Environmental Studies Bldg. Light refreshments will be available in the hour between seminars.

The morning session, “Mathematical Approaches for Curtailing the AIDS Pandemic” with Gumel, begins at 11:30am. The afternoon session, “Transmission of HIV-1 in India: Determinants and Interventions” with Jha begins at 1:30pm.

MITACS is part of the National Networks of Centres of Excellence and is recognized worldwide as an effective new model for research and development in the mathematical sciences, one that addresses the imperatives of research, education and technology transfer. The MITACS network focuses on developing mathematical solutions that address issues in the fastest growing sectors of the nation’s economy.

Right: The human immunodeficiency virus

Gumel, who was born in Nigeria, received his PhD in computational mathematics from England’s Brunel University. He has been making significant contributions in many areas of applied mathematics, including designing and analyzing models for emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases aimed at determining optimal control strategies for an epidemic.

Jha is a Canadian Rhodes Scholar and MD who received his PhD in epidemiology and public health at Oxford University. A former senior scientist at the World Health Organization, Jha conducts studies of HIV transmission in various countries. His studies have received more than $5 million in peer-reviewed grants and, at the World Bank, he led the design of the US$230-million Second National HIV/AIDS Control Project and a US$200-million malaria control project, both in India. He is also an advisor to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation on HIV/AIDS control in India.