Contribution of mathematical modeling to the fight against bacterial antibiotic resistance

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Purpose of reviewModeling of antibiotic resistance in pathogenic bacteria responsible for human disease has developed considerably over the last decade. Herein, we summarize the main published studies to illustrate the contribution of models for understanding both within-host and population-based phenomena. We then suggest possible topics for future studies.Recent findingsModel building of bacterial resistance has involved epidemiologists, biologists and modelers with two different objectives. First, modeling has helped largely in identifying and understanding the factors and biological phenomena responsible for the emergence and spread of resistant strains. Second, these models have become important decision support tools for medicine and public health.SummaryMajor improvements of models in the coming years should take into account specific pathogen characteristics (resistance mechanisms, multiple colonization phenomena, cooperation and competition among species) and better description of the contacts associated with transmission risk within populations.

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