Beginning Graduate Seminar in Math Biology 

                               Fall 2009

This seminar will be offered Tu Th 11:00-12:15 in RLM 9.160 by
professors Davis and Uhlenbeck.

 The seminar is intended to introduce first year graduate students and advanced undergraduate students to some of the subjects in mathematical biology.  The course will be in a seminar rather than lecture format.

We will begin by rapidly reviewing  basic  discrete and continuous methods of modeling and explicitly look at the basic population models, some elementary enzyme kinetics, the Hodgkin-Huxley and Fitzhugh-Nagamo equations for nerve impulses and basic epidemiolgy models.  The seminar will diverge in the directions of interest to the participants; these topics could include such topics as more advanced epidemiology, molecular evolution, the BZ chemical reactions and some elementary pattern formation.

There will be a few set lectures on basic topics, regular seminar contributions by the participants and guest lectures by advanced students and professors. Students will be asked to work on a short project or paper on a more advanced topic which is of specific interest to the student and present this towards the end of the term. We also encourage some level of  experimentation with matlab.

Prerequisites are basic undergraduate courses in ordinary differential equations, linear algebra and some mathematical sophistication.

Interested students should e-mail either Professor Davis ( or Professor Uhlenbeck (


Edelstein-Keshet, Mathematical Models in Biology, SIAM, Classics in Applied Mathematics.  (A basic reference for the course.)

Strogatz, Non-linear Dynamics and Chaos, Westview (excellent review).

Allman and Rhodes, Mathematical Models in Biology, Cambridge.

Britton, Essential Mathematical Biology, Springer.

Keener and Sneyd, Mathematical Physiology, Springer (good grad text).

Murray, Mathematical Biology, Springer.