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Smoking gun or circumstantial evidence?: comparison of statistical learning methods using functional annotations for prioritizing risk variants

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  • Sarah A. Gagliano
  • Reena Ravji
  • Michael R. Barnes
  • Michael E. Weale
  • Jo Knight
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Article number13373
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>24/08/2015
<mark>Journal</mark>Scientific Reports
Volume5
Number of pages11
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English

Abstract

Although technology has triumphed in facilitating routine genome sequencing, new challenges have been created for the data-analyst. Genome-scale surveys of human variation generate volumes of data that far exceed capabilities for laboratory characterization. By incorporating functional annotations as predictors, statistical learning has been widely investigated for prioritizing genetic variants likely to be associated with complex disease. We compared three published prioritization procedures, which use different statistical learning algorithms and different predictors with regard to the quantity, type and coding. We also explored different combinations of algorithm and annotation set. As an application, we tested which methodology performed best for prioritizing variants using data from a large schizophrenia meta-analysis by the Psychiatric Genomics Consortium. Results suggest that all methods have considerable (and similar) predictive accuracies (AUCs 0.64-0.71) in test set data, but there is more variability in the application to the schizophrenia GWAS. In conclusion, a variety of algorithms and annotations seem to have a similar potential to effectively enrich true risk variants in genome-scale datasets, however none offer more than incremental improvement in prediction. We discuss how methods might be evolved for risk variant prediction to address the impending bottleneck of the new generation of genome re-sequencing studies.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/