Lien vers Pubmed [PMID] – 21908866
Biostatistics 2012 Jan;13(1):129-41
Analysis of multivariate data sets from, for example, microarray studies frequently results in lists of genes which are associated with some response of interest. The biological interpretation is often complicated by the statistical instability of the obtained gene lists, which may partly be due to the functional redundancy among genes, implying that multiple genes can play exchangeable roles in the cell. In this paper, we use the concept of exchangeability of random variables to model this functional redundancy and thereby account for the instability. We present a flexible framework to incorporate the exchangeability into the representation of lists. The proposed framework supports straightforward comparison between any 2 lists. It can also be used to generate new more stable gene rankings incorporating more information from the experimental data. Using 2 microarray data sets, we show that the proposed method provides more robust gene rankings than existing methods with respect to sampling variations, without compromising the biological significance of the rankings.