Rich dynamics of a hepatitis B viral infection model with logistic hepatocyte growth. (English) Zbl 1311.92117

Summary: Chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection is a major cause of human suffering, and a number of mathematical models have examined within-host dynamics of the disease. Most previous HBV infection models have assumed that: (a) hepatocytes regenerate at a constant rate from a source outside the liver; and/or (b) the infection takes place via a mass action process. Assumption (a) contradicts experimental data showing that healthy hepatocytes proliferate at a rate that depends on current liver size relative to some equilibrium mass, while assumption (b) produces a problematic basic reproduction number. Here we replace the constant infusion of healthy hepatocytes with a logistic growth term and the mass action infection term by a standard incidence function; these modifications enrich the dynamics of a well-studied model of HBV pathogenesis. In particular, in addition to disease free and endemic steady states, the system also allows a stable periodic orbit and a steady state at the origin. Since the system is not differentiable at the origin, we use a ratio-dependent transformation to show that there is a region in parameter space where the origin is globally stable. When the basic reproduction number, \(R_{0}\), is less than 1, the disease free steady state is stable. When \(R_{0}>1\) the system can either converge to the chronic steady state, experience sustained oscillations, or approach the origin. We characterize parameter regions for all three situations, identify a Hopf and a homoclinic bifurcation point, and show how they depend on the basic reproduction number and the intrinsic growth rate of hepatocytes.


92C60 Medical epidemiology
34C23 Bifurcation theory for ordinary differential equations
34C25 Periodic solutions to ordinary differential equations
92C50 Medical applications (general)
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