Using Mathematics to Fight Cancer
Ami Radunskaya, Professor of Mathematics, Pomona College
This Spring the UL Lafayette Chapter of the Association for Women in Mathematics is sponsoring four colloquia by prominent female mathematicians. Prior to each colloquium, we will host an informal luncheon for students to meet with the colloquium speaker and discuss topics such as research, work-life balance, and career development. Everyone is welcome. Undergraduate math majors are especially encouraged to attend! Our first guest is Professor Ami Radunskaya.
14 February 2019
Oliver Hall Auditorium (room 112)
Luncheon: 11:00-12:30, Maxim Doucet Hall 206
Contact Madi Angerdina to register for the luncheon.
What can mathematics tell us about the treatment of cancer? In this talk I will present some of work that I have done in the modeling of tumor growth and treatment over the last fifteen years. Cancer is a myriad of individual diseases, with the common feature that an individual's own cells have become malignant. Thus, the treatment of cancer poses great challenges, since an attack must be mounted against cells that are nearly identical to normal cells. Mathematical models that describe tumor growth in tissue, the immune response, and the administration of different therapies can suggest treatment strategies that optimize treatment efficacy and minimize negative side-effects. However, the inherent complexity of the immune system and the spatial heterogeneity of human tissue gives rise to mathematical models that pose unique challenges for the mathematician. In this talk I will give a few examples of how mathematicians can work with clinicians and immunologists to understand the development of the disease and to design effective treatments. I will use mathematical tools from dynamical systems, optimal control and network analysis.
This talk is intended for a general math audience: no knowledge of biology will be assumed.
About the speaker
Ami Radunskaya is a professor of mathematics at Pomona College. Among her areas of expertise are mathematical modeling of tumor growth and treatment, dynamical systems and analysis of non-linear models of power systems. She is co-director of EDGE (Enhancing Diversity in Graduate Education) as well as the President of the EDGE Foundation. EDGE is a national program designed to increase the number of women students, particularly minority women, successfully completing graduate programs in the mathematical sciences.
As President of the Association for Women in Mathematics (AWM), one of her goals is to build community between all types of mathematicians by supporting a unified network of members, and by paying attention to the needs of all members. Aspiring mathematicians don’t all have equal access to research opportunities, graduate school, internships, post-docs, jobs and recognition. As AWM President, she will work within the association and with other groups to facilitate access to opportunities in mathematics.
There will be time for conversations and getting to know each other. Be a part of this UL Lafayette math community that supports and inspires girls and young women who love math. Men are welcome and encouraged to attend.