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Robust Association Tests Under Different Genetic Models, Allowing for Binary or Quantitative Traits and Covariates

By Hon-Cheong So and Pak C. Sham


The association of genetic variants with outcomes is usually assessed under an additive model, for example by the trend test. However, misspecification of the genetic model will lead to a reduction in power. More robust tests for association might therefore be preferred. A useful approach is to consider the maximum of the three test statistics under additive, dominant and recessive models (MAX3). The p-value however has to be adjusted to maintain the type I error rate. Previous studies and software on robust association tests have focused on binary traits without covariates. In this study we developed an analytic approach to robust association tests using MAX3, allowing for quantitative or binary traits as well as covariates. The p-values from our theoretical calculations match very well with those from a bootstrap resampling procedure. The methodology is implemented in the R package RobustSNP which is able to handle both small-scale studies and GWAS. The package and documentation are available at

Topics: Original Research
Publisher: Springer US
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Provided by: PubMed Central

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