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SSC Seminar Series - Xiang Zhou

Tuesday, January 21, 2014, 01:00pm - 02:00pm
Title: "Polygenic modeling with Bayesian sparse linear mixed models in genome-wide association studies


Abstract: Both linear mixed models (LMMs) and sparse regression models are widely used in genetics applications, including, recently, polygenic modeling in genome-wide association studies. These two approaches make very different assumptions, so are expected to perform well in different situations. However, in practice, for a given dataset one typically does not know which assumptions will be more accurate. Motivated by this, I consider a hybrid of the two, which we refer to as a “Bayesian sparse linear mixed model” (BSLMM) that includes both these models as special cases. I address several key computational and statistical issues that arise when applying BSLMM, including appropriate prior specification for the hyper-parameters and a novel Markov chain Monte Carlo algorithm for posterior inference. I apply BSLMM and compare it with other methods for two polygenic modeling applications: estimating the proportion of variance in phenotypes explained (PVE) by available genotypes (i.e. "chip heritability"), and phenotype (or breeding value) prediction. For PVE estimation, I demonstrate that BSLMM combines the advantages of both standard LMMs and sparse regression modeling. For phenotype prediction it considerably outperforms either of the other two methods, as well as several other large-scale regression methods previously suggested for this problem.
Location : GDC 4.302
Contact : Sasha Schellenberg