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The relationship between human behavior and the process of epidemic spreading in a real social network
1 Central Institute for Labour Protection, National Research Institute, 00-701 Warsaw, Poland
2 National Institute of Hygiene, National Center for Disease Prevention and Control, 00-701 Warsaw, Poland
Received: 30 March 2011
Received in final form: 5 December 2011
Published online: 23 July 2012
On the basis of experimental data on interactions between humans we have investigated the process of epidemic spreading in a social network. We found that the distribution of the number of contacts maintained in one day is exponential. Data on frequency and duration of interpersonal interactions are presented. They allow us to simulate the spread of droplet-/-air-borne infections and to investigate the influence of human dynamics on the epidemic spread. Specifically, we investigated the influence of the distribution of frequency and duration of those contacts on magnitude, epidemic threshold and peak timing of epidemics propagating in respective networks. It turns out that a large increase in the magnitude of an epidemic and a decrease in epidemic threshold are visible if and only if both are taken into account. We have found that correlation between contact frequency and duration strongly influences the effectiveness of control measures like mass immunization campaigns.
Key words: Interdisciplinary Physics
© EDP Sciences, Società Italiana di Fisica and Springer-Verlag, 2012