A symbolic investigation of superspreaders

Chris McCaig, M. Begon, C. Shankland, R. Norman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Superspreaders are an important phenomenon in the spread of infectious disease, accounting for a higher than average number of new infections in the population. We use mathematical models to compare the impact of supershedders and supercontacters on population dynamics. The stochastic, individual based models are investigated by conversion to deterministic, population level Mean Field Equations, using process algebra. The mean emergent population dynamics of the models are shown to be equivalent with and without superspreaders; however, simulations confirm expectations of differences in variability, having implications for individual epidemics.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)777-794
Number of pages18
JournalBulletin of Mathematical Biology
Issue number4
Early online date23 Dec 2010
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • symbolic investigation
  • superspreaders


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