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Dr. Qi Zheng receives NIH Funding

Qi Zheng

Qi Zheng, PhD, Associate Professor, Dept. of Bioinformatics and Biostatistics. received a $447,386 grant over two years from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) National Institute on Aging for a project titled: Global significance test based on quantile regression with applications to genomic studies of Alzheimer’s disease.

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a major cause of death for the elderly. While there is no current cure for AD, genomics studies, such as mapping expression quantitative trait loci) and differential gene expressions, are playing a critical role in understanding the biological aspects of AD and developing potential treatments.

Existing research appear to show that covariates (e.g., quantitative gene expression) may have varying impacts on the distribution of relevant responses such as disease phenotypes. This leads us to believe that there is a heterogeneous covariates-response association. Those heterogeneous associations shed insight on scientific discoveries and entail significant implications but are often neglected by most existing analysis procedures confined to narrow aspects of the response distribution (e.g., standard linear regression focusing on the mean or quantile regression at a single quantile level).

Dr. Zheng’s research aims to develop valid and efficient hypothesis tests to detect heterogeneous associations. In addition to being of great value to genomics studies of complex diseases such as AD, this project will facilitate detecting heterogeneous associations leading to development of potential treatments.

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