Laura Matrajt

I am an applied mathematician passionate about utilizing quantitative tools (mathematical and computer models, statistics, optimization theory) to understand complex biological processes. My research lies at the interface of applied mathematics, biology and public health policy. I use a wide range of tools from applied mathematics including dynamical systems, differential equations, stochastic processes, operations research and optimization theory to forward our understanding of infectious disease dynamics.

I was born and raised in Mexico City, Mexico. I attended UNAM, where I studied Mathematics as an undergraduate. I moved to Seattle, WA, where I completed a PhD in the Applied Mathematics Department at the University of Washington, where I graduated in 2011.

Selected Projects

Optimal vaccine allocation for COVID-19: Who should get vaccinated first?

In collaboration with Tiffany Leung, Julie Eaton and Elizabeth R. Brown, we are investigating the optimal allocation strategies for COVID-19 vaccines (Science Advances, 2021).

The New York Times magazine did a really nice piece covering our work here!
Undark magazine has an excellent piece covering our work here!

Could widespread use of antiviral treatment curb the COVID-19 pandemic? A modeling study.

Using an agent-based model, we evaluated the population-level effects of antiviral treatments to reduce COVID-19 deaths and SARS-CoV-2 transmission.

Optimizing cholera vaccine allocation

What is the best use of scarce resources during a cholera outbreak? How is the optimal use of vaccine depend on things like transmissibility, age, setting (urban vs. rural)? Check the paper here:
PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, 2022

COVID-19 dynamics and social distancing interventions

What does the term “flattening the curve” exactly mean? In this paper, Tiffany Leung and I quantified the effectiveness of social distancing interventions against COVID-19. We showed that if started early, social distancing interventions delay the epidemic, and if started late, they result in flattening the curve. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 2020

Listen to a podcast about this work here:

Optimizing vaccine allocation for COVID-19 vaccines show the potential role of single-dose vaccination.

We investigated the use of mixed vaccination strategies with one and two doses of COVID-19 vaccines. (Nature Communications, 2021).

Listen to NPR interview here!

B-cell immunology

How do B-cells differentiate to create antibodies against virtually every single antigen they encounter? In collaboration with Ollivier Hyrien, we are developing a stochastic model of B-cell affinity maturation.


Get in Touch

Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
1100 Fairview Ave N
Seattle, WA 98125

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