In order to personalize or tailor treatments to maximize impact among different subgroups, there is need to model not only the main effects of intervention but also the variation in intervention impact by baseline individual level risk characteristics. To this end a suitable statistical model will allow researchers to answer a major research question: who benefits or is harmed by this intervention program? Commonly in social and psychological research, the baseline risk may be unobservable and have to be estimated from observed indicators that are measured with errors; also it may have nonlinear relationship with the outcome. Most of the existing nonlinear structural equation models (SEM’s) developed to address such problems employ polynomial or fully parametric nonlinear functions to define the structural equations. These methods are limited because they require functional forms to be specified beforehand and even if the models include higher order polynomials there may be problems when the focus of interest relates to the function over its whole domain.
To develop a more flexible statistical modeling technique for assessing complex relationships between a proximal/distal outcome and (1) baseline characteristics measured with errors, and (2) baseline-treatment interaction; such that the shapes of these relationships are data driven and there is no need for the shapes to be determined a priori. In the ALV model structure the nonlinear components of the regression equations are represented as generalized additive model (GAM), or generalized additive mixed-effects model (GAMM).
Replication study results show that the ALV model estimates of underlying relationships in the data are sufficiently close to the true pattern. The ALV modeling technique allows researchers to assess how an intervention affects individuals differently as a function of baseline risk that is itself measured with error, and uncover complex relationships in the data that might otherwise be missed. Although the ALV approach is computationally intensive, it relieves its users from the need to decide functional forms before the model is run. It can be extended to examine complex nonlinearity between growth factors and distal outcomes in a longitudinal study.
|Advisor:||Brown, Charles Hendricks, Dagne, Getachew|
|School:||University of South Florida|
|School Location:||United States -- Florida|
|Source:||DAI-B 71/09, Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Biostatistics, Applied Mathematics, Statistics|
|Keywords:||Additive latent variable, Intervention impact, Nonlinear SEM, Randomized field trials, True pattern|
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