Mathematical Oncology module (MA52001)

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Module code


About the module

This Level 5 module will undertake analysis and computational simulation of mathematical models of cancer growth and treatment. In addition to the mathematical formulation and analysis of such systems which will take place during the formal lectures, through tutorial work students will undertake computational analyses using tools such as MATLAB and COMSOL introduced in MA51004. This module is mandatory for students on the MSci in Mathematical Biology degree and may optionally be taken in combination with other modules by students on the MMath in Mathematics or MSci in Mathematics and Physics. If you have questions about this module or the possible combinations, please contact your Advisor of Studies.


Students taking this module must usually have achieved a pass mark in the module MA31002, or equivalent.

Indicative Content

  • Overview of Cancer Growth and Spread

    The biology of cancer.

  • Avascular Solid Tumour Growth

    ODE models of solid tumour growth Greenspan′s model. Reaction-diffusion moving boundary models.

  • Tumour-induced Angiogenesis

    Continuum PDE models. Hybrid discrete-continuum models.

  • Cancer Invasion

    Continuum PDE models. Hybrid discrete-continuum models.

  • Immune Response to Cancer

    ODE models of the immune response to cancer. PDE models of the immune response to cancer.

  • Chemotherapy and Radiotherapy Treatment

    Chemotherapy drug scheduling models. The linear-quadratic radiobiological model.

Delivery and Assessment

The module is delivered in the form of lectures and tutorials/computer labs and assessed via exam (100%).

Credit Rating

This module is a Scottish Higher Education Level 5 or SCQF level 11 module and is rated as 15 SCOTCAT credits or 7.5 ECTS credits.