Nashville, Tennessee, United States
Poor R0, so much abused.
Its calculation confused.
Sometimes high, sometimes low, sometimes blamed
For being wrong.What it is ‘tis hard to say,
Parameters change day by day.
All it wants is some respect,
To be correct.Microbes try to raise it up.
Doctors try to make it fall.
All the while mathematicians
Try to figure its position.When high, it plays a tragic role,
On countless souls it takes its toll.
When plague appears, we fear
For each new scourge it tells our fate
With factored in transmission rate.
Get down R0! Know your place! Do not torment
The human race!
GLENN WEBB, PhD is a professor of mathematics at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. Much of his research involves mathematical models in medicine, including models of tumor growth, cancer therapy, antibiotic resistance in hospitals, and epidemics such as HIV, anthrax, influenza, and prion disease.