Skip Navigation
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Dot gov

The .gov means it’s official.
Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you’re on a federal government site.


The site is secure.
The https:// ensures that you are connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and transmitted securely.

Your Environment. Your Health.

Publication Detail

Title: Empirical hierarchical bayes approach to gene-environment interactions: development and application to genome-wide association studies of lung cancer in TRICL.

Authors: Sohns, Melanie; Viktorova, Elena; Amos, Christopher I; Brennan, Paul; Fehringer, Gord; Gaborieau, Valerie; Han, Younghun; Heinrich, Joachim; Chang-Claude, Jenny; Hung, Rayjean J; Müller-Nurasyid, Martina; Risch, Angela; Thomas, Duncan; Bickeböller, Heike

Published In Genet Epidemiol, (2013 Sep)

Abstract: The analysis of gene-environment (G × E) interactions remains one of the greatest challenges in the postgenome-wide association studies (GWASs) era. Recent methods constitute a compromise between the robust but underpowered case-control and powerful case-only methods. Inferences of the latter are biased when the assumption of gene-environment (G-E) independence in controls fails. We propose a novel empirical hierarchical Bayes approach to G × E interaction (EHB-GE), which benefits from greater rank power while accounting for population-based G-E correlation. Building on Lewinger et al.'s ([2007] Genet Epidemiol 31:871-882) hierarchical Bayes prioritization approach, the method first obtains posterior G-E correlation estimates in controls for each marker, borrowing strength from G-E information across the genome. These posterior estimates are then subtracted from the corresponding case-only G × E estimates. We compared EHB-GE with rival methods using simulation. EHB-GE has similar or greater rank power to detect G × E interactions in the presence of large numbers of G-E correlations with weak to strong effects or only a low number of such correlations with large effect. When there are no or only a few weak G-E correlations, Murcray et al.'s method ([2009] Am J Epidemiol 169:219-226) identifies markers with low G × E interaction effects better. We applied EHB-GE and competing methods to four lung cancer case-control GWAS from the Interdisciplinary Research in Cancer of the Lung/International Lung Cancer Consortium with smoking as environmental factor. A number of genes worth investigating were identified by the EHB-GE approach.

PubMed ID: 23893921 Exiting the NIEHS site

MeSH Terms: Bayes Theorem*; Bias; Case-Control Studies; Computer Simulation; Gene-Environment Interaction*; Genome, Human; Genome-Wide Association Study; Humans; Lung Neoplasms/genetics*; Models, Genetic*; Smoking

to Top