Systematic Mathematical Modeling for Agile Development of Model Based Medical Control Systems

Asbjørn Thode Reenberg: Automated Medical Treatment Improves the Quality of Life for Patients

Today, many people suffer from diseases that require constant treatment. An example is diabetes. Diabetes is a growing world-wide problem and in 2016, 415 million people suffered from diabetes, including more than 250,000 people in Denmark. Type 1 diabetes (T1D) accounts for 5-10% of the patients with diabetes while type 2 diabetes (T2D) accounts for the remaining 90-95%. The cost of diabetes for the Danish society is estimated to 86 million DKK per day.

The availability of new sensors and computer technology enable feedback control-based medical treatments for a number of diseases, e.g. cancer, chronic obstructive pulmanory disease (COPD), and diabetes. To obtain high performance in such systems, they must be based on model-based control principles.


While the drugs are one component, the overall system rather than the individual components becomes the competitive advantage. However, obtaining a mathematical model that is individualized to the patient, controlling a pump for drug delivery, and having a user interface that is useful and appealing to the patient as well as healthcare professionals is a cumbersome and time-consuming process.


In this project we develop methodologies that enable agile development of complete model-based medical control systems for blood glucose regulation in people with diabetes (type 1 & 2) as well as critically ill people in the intensive care unit (ICU).


These methodologies include an integrated framework for systematic model building and nonlinear model predictive control (NMPC) based on stochastic differential equations (SDEs). The framework is integrated with techniques from digital media engineering.

The development of such a framework will ultimately decrease the time required to develop model based medical control systems while standardized simulation tools for testing on multiple fictive patients will make successful clinical trials more likely.



Figure: An example of a model-based medical control system (the artificial pancreas) consisting of a sensor, a smart phone and two pumps.

PhD project

By: Asbjørn Thode Reenberg

Section: Scientific Computing

Principal supervisor: John Bagterp Jørgensen

Co-supervisors: Dimitri Boiroux, Per Bækgaard, Kirsten Nørgaard

Project title: Systematic Mathematical Modeling for Agile Development of Model Based Medical Control Systems

Term: 01/12/2019 → 01/03/2023


Asbjørn Thode Reenberg
PhD student
DTU Compute
+45 28 56 16 36


John Bagterp Jørgensen
DTU Compute
+45 45 25 30 88


Per Bækgaard
Associate Professor
DTU Compute
+45 45 25 39 08