Date of Completion

Spring 5-1-2008

Thesis Advisor(s)

Ranjan Srivastava

Honors Major

Chemical Engineering


Biochemical and Biomolecular Engineering | Chemical Engineering | Engineering


Oral Mucositis is a condition seen in post-treatment mouth cancer patients and is a condition of which the pathobiology is not entirely known. It is a condition that shares many common pathways with other alimentary tract injuries such as inflammatory bowel disease. Mathematical modeling of the system can help to identify gaps in the current knowledge base as well as assist in generating new hypotheses and predicting clinical outcomes of conditions. A detailed mathematical model would assist researchers in determining which drug targets are worthwhile investigating. Deterministic modeling and Virtual Cell&#; software were used to assign rate constants to each pathway and define the model. The model was based on a heterogeneous data set of both oral mucositis and inflammatory bowel disease subjects from both human and animal models due to the lack of data from a single homogenous cohort. The model although not capturing the transient dynamics of the data was able to come to a steady state for eight of the nine network components as well as predict the steady state concentration within error for six of eight of these components. This model will help to guide further investigation and research in this field. It will also help to more fully understand the pathobiology of the condition as well as assist in the development of new drugs that can help improve the quality of life patients suffering from this very painful condition.