Using Probability Distributions in Parameters of Variables at Agent-Based Simulations: A Case Study for the TB Bacillus Growth Curve

Using Probability Distributions in Parameters of Variables at Agent-Based Simulations: A Case Study for the TB Bacillus Growth Curve

Marcilene Fonseca de Moraes (Universidade Federal do Rio Grande, Brazil), Diana Francisca Adamatti (Universidade Federal do Rio Grande, Brazil), Albano Oliveira de Borba (Universidade Federal do Rio Grande, Brazil), Adriano Velasque Werhli (Universidade Federal do Rio Grande, Brazil) and Andrea von Groll (Universidade Federal do Rio Grande, Brazil)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-1756-6.ch014
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Abstract

Even treatable and preventable with medication, tuberculosis (TB) continues to infect and cause deaths globally, especially in the poorest countries and in most vulnerable parts of the rich countries. Given this situation, the study of the growth curve of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, which causes tuberculosis, can be a strong ally against TB. This study models the growth curve of Mycobacterium tuberculosis using simulation based agents, aiming to simulate the curve with the minimum possible error when compared to in vitro results. To implement this model, the agents represent the bacteria in their habitat and how they interact with each other and the environment. Some parameters of the agents are modelled with probability distributions.
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Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis (TB) is a contagious infectious disease transmitted by Mycobacterium tuberculosis. It was discovered on March 24, 1882 by the German scientist Robert Koch, and so the tuberculosis bacillus, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, is also known as Koch's bacillus.

Mycobacterium tuberculosis is an intracellular pathogen that can affect various animal species, although humans are the main hosts. It grows with more success in tissues that contain high levels of oxygen, such as the lungs (Lawn & Zumla, 2011).

TB is an ancient disease that continues to be one of the major health problems worldwide. During the humanity history, TB received different names and was often associated with high rates of infection and mortality (Groll, 2010).

Passion and Gontijo (2007) reported that although preventable and treatable with medication, tuberculosis has been presented with an intensity of contamination, with repercussions on health and mortality rates.

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