Models of disease and vaccination scenarios in the UK

Our analytical research priorities range across a wide range of disease areas, with many cross-cutting methodologies and challenges; integration and analysis of diverse surveillance data; statistical methods for estimating unknown model parameters; genetic analysis of whole genome sequence data; and the development of simulation tools.

The HPRU in Modelling Methodology facilitates translation of its research into sustained gains in PHE’s capacity to collect, analyse, model and interpret diverse datasets by developing robust easy-to-use computer software for use by non-modellers and via a comprehensive training and capacity building programme.


Research themeLead staffDescription
Respiratory infections

ICL: Steven Riley & Marc Baguelin

PHE: Peter White

Application of data synthesis approaches to improving the understanding of the transmission dynamics and impact of controls for influenza and TB, with a focus on patterns of spatiotemporal spread and the utility of data on social contact patterns.
Behaviour and economics ICL: Katharina Hauck
PHE: Richard Amlot
Surveillance and the effectiveness of interventions are affected by patient treatment-seeking behaviour and (sometimes incentive-driven) provider behaviour. We collate data on both (focussing on influenza but also considering chlamydia and TB) and integrate behavioural and economic models into transmission models to explore the implications for transmission, surveillance and interventions. 
HIV and STIs ICL: Erik Volz
PHE: Peter White
HIV is not under control in the UK and the reasons are not clear. The HIV and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) theme projects combine genetic and epidemiological data to better understand transmission and inform intervention policy. We rigorously test alternate model structures against detailed epidemiological data.
Emerging threats ICL: Christl Donnelly
PHE: Emma Bennett
Development of methods and tools to improve our ability to detect, assess and respond to novel pathogens (e.g. pandemic flu) and biological agents (e.g. anthrax) by (a) exploiting novel data sources (web-based syndromic surveillance and mobile phone data) to rapidly detect and epidemiologically assess outbreaks, and (b) increasing the speed and reliability of data collection and processing from outbreak investigations.
Genetics and epi analysis ICL: Xavier Didelot
PHE: John Paul
Development of methods required for fully exploiting Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) data to increase the power of current epidemiological analyses of disease threats. Correspondent with the Informatics theme, we specifically focus the use of genomic analysis to improve surveillance, characterisation and analysis of antimicrobial resistance (priorities identified by the new UK 5-year antimicrobial resistance strategy).
Informatics, platforms and tools ICL: Thibaut Jombart
PHE: Ioannis Karagianis
The 'Informatics, platforms and tools' theme aims to translate cutting-edge methodology into robust, user-friendly analysis tools for disease surveillance and outbreak response. Involving the methodological community at large, we develop a range of free, open-source software and training resources to address a variety of problems, ranging from basic data visualisation and early outbreak assessment to more advanced modelling tools integrating genomic and epidemiological data.
Training and Capacity Building ICL: Azra Ghani
PHE: Peter White
The training and capacity building theme combines Imperial College and Public Health England’s (PHE’s) strengths and expertise to develop a broad-ranging training and capacity building programme for staff across PHE and the HPRU.
Summary of the table's contents