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The challenges of containing SARS-CoV-2 via test-trace-and-isolate

MPS-Authors
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Contreras,  Sebastian
Max Planck Research Group Neural Systems Theory, Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization, Max Planck Society;

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Dehning,  Jonas
Max Planck Research Group Neural Systems Theory, Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization, Max Planck Society;

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Loidolt,  Matthias
Max Planck Research Group Neural Systems Theory, Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization, Max Planck Society;

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Zierenberg,  Johannes
Max Planck Research Group Neural Systems Theory, Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization, Max Planck Society;

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Spitzner,  F. Paul
Max Planck Research Group Neural Systems Theory, Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization, Max Planck Society;

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Urrea-Quintero,  Jorge H.
Max Planck Research Group Neural Systems Theory, Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization, Max Planck Society;

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Mohr,  Sebastian B.
Max Planck Research Group Neural Systems Theory, Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization, Max Planck Society;

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Wilczek,  Michael
Max Planck Research Group Theory of Turbulent Flows, Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization, Max Planck Society;

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Priesemann,  Viola
Max Planck Research Group Neural Systems Theory, Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization, Max Planck Society;

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Fulltext (public)

2009.05732.pdf
(Preprint), 2MB

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Citation

Contreras, S., Dehning, J., Loidolt, M., Zierenberg, J., Spitzner, F. P., Urrea-Quintero, J. H., et al. (2021). The challenges of containing SARS-CoV-2 via test-trace-and-isolate. Nature Communications, 12: 378. doi:10.1038/s41467-020-20699-8.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0007-0440-C
Abstract
Without a cure, vaccine, or proven long-term immunity against SARS-CoV-2, test-trace-and-isolate (TTI) strategies present a promising tool to contain the viral spread. For any TTI strategy, however, a major challenge arises from pre- and asymptomatic transmission as well as TTI-avoiders, which contribute to hidden, unnoticed infection chains. In our semi-analytical model, we identified two distinct tipping points between controlled and uncontrolled spreading: one, at which the behavior-driven reproduction number of the hidden infections becomes too large to be compensated by the available TTI capabilities, and one at which the number of new infections starts to exceed the tracing capacity, causing a self-accelerating spread. We investigated how these tipping points depend on realistic limitations like limited cooperativity, missing contacts, and imperfect isolation, finding that TTI is likely not sufficient to contain the natural spread of SARS-CoV-2. Therefore, complementary measures like reduced physical contacts and improved hygiene probably remain necessary.