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Volume 26, Number 11—November 2020
Online Report

Early Insights from Statistical and Mathematical Modeling of Key Epidemiologic Parameters of COVID-19

Matthew Biggerstaff, Benjamin J. Cowling, Zulma M. Cucunubá, Linh Dinh, Neil M. Ferguson, Huizhi Gao, Verity Hill, Natsuko Imai, Michael A. Johansson, Sarah Kada, Oliver Morgan, Ana Pastore y Piontti, Jonathan A. Polonsky, Pragati Venkata Prasad, Talia M. Quandelacy, Andrew Rambaut, Jordan W. Tappero, Katelijn A. VandemaeleComments to Author , Alessandro Vespignani, K. Lane Warmbrod, Jessica Y. Wong, and for the WHO COVID-19 Modelling Parameters Group
Author affiliations: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, USA (M. Biggerstaff, M.A. Johansson, S. Kada, P.V. Prasad, T.M. Quandelacy); University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China (B.J. Cowling, H. Gao, J.Y. Wong); Imperial College London, London, UK (Z.M. Cucunubá, N.M. Ferguson, N. Imai); World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland (L. Dinh, O. Morgan, J.A. Polonsky, J.W. Tappero, K.A. Vandemaele, K.L. Warmbrod); University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK (V. Hill, A. Rambaut); Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts, USA (A. Pastore y Piontti, A. Vespignani); ISI Foundation, Turin, Italy (A. Vespignani)

Main Article

Table 1

Key parameters and definitions for modeling of coronavirus disease

Parameter Definition
Basic reproduction number (R0)
Average number of persons infected by a single infected individual in a fully susceptible population
Time-varying or effective reproduction number (R, Rt, RE)
Average number of persons infected by an infected individual in a population in the context of changing transmission patterns, such as those resulting from interventions and acquired immunity
Incubation period
Time between infection and symptom onset
Serial interval
Average time between symptom onset in a primary case and symptom onset in linked secondary cases
Generation interval
Average time between infection of a primary case and infection of linked secondary cases
Doubling time
Average time for the daily case count to double
Infectious period
Period during which an infected host, with or without symptoms, can transmit an infectious agent to susceptible persons, directly or indirectly
Case-fatality ratio
Proportion of cases that result in death (with case defined in numerous ways)
Infection-fatality ratio
Proportion of all infections (confirmed, symptomatic, asymptomatic) that result in death
Mean evolutionary rate Average rate at which mutations accumulate per base pair in the genome over the course of a year

Main Article

1All authors contributed equally to this article.

Page created: September 11, 2020
Page updated: September 11, 2020
Page reviewed: September 11, 2020
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