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Evaluating Epistatic Interaction Signals In Complex Traits Using Quantitative Traits

O. Mukherjee, K. R. Sanapala, Padmanabhan Anbazhagana, S. Ghosh
Published 2009 · Medicine

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Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a complex, chronic inflammatory disease implicated to have several plausible candidate loci; however, these may not account for all the genetic variations underlying RA. Common disorders are hypothesized to be highly complex with interaction among genes and other risk factors playing a major role in the disease process. This complexity is further magnified because such interactions may be with or without a strong independent effect and are thus difficult to detect using traditional statistical methodologies. The main challenge to analyze such gene × gene and gene × environment interaction is attributed to a phenomenon referred to as the "curse of dimensionality." Several combinatorial methodologies have been proposed to tackle this analytical challenge. Because quantitative traits underlie complex phenotypes and contain more information on the trait variation within genotypes than qualitative dichotomy, analyzing quantitative traits correlated with the affection status is a more powerful tool for mapping such trait genes. Recently, a generalized multifactor dimensionality reduction method was proposed that allows for adjustment for discrete and quantitative traits and can be used to analyze qualitative and quantitative phenotypes in a population based study design.In this report, we evaluate the efficiency of the generalized multifactor dimensionality reduction statistical suite to decipher small interacting factors that contribute to RA disease pathogenesis.
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