Multiple organ dysfunction syndrome (MODS) is a common cause of
death in intensive care unit patients. MODS is characterized by
sequential organ failure caused by an overactive immune system. We
have developed multiple models to facilitate our understanding MODS.
We focused on the acute immune response, which is the generic initial
Mathematical models of the acute immune response
We first derived a small scale model for the acute inflammation to
understand simple dynamics between pro- and anti-inflammation. We use
this reduced model to explore the role of anti-inflammatory mediators,
which were once hypothesized as a treatment for MODS with less success
We expanded this model into two more complex models. The first
model takes in account the interactions between the tissue and blood,
which are essential during an inflammatory response. This model is a
minimum model for an organ. Therefore, we used this model to explore
the spread of inflammation between organs by linking two tissues units
to the same blood supply.
The second models the effects of inflammation on gas exchange in
the lung. The lung is typically the first organ to fail during MODS.
Therefore, we have developed a model of the lung by first modeling a
single respiratory unit (~25 alveoli) with inflammatory effects and
then linking multiple respiratory units under various anatomical
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