From 3-5 February, the joint HELIX-EXPOsOMICS working group on statistics convened in Vercors, France, for a 3-day long workshop concentrating on simulation studies for the two exposome projects.
Following extensive and productive discussions, it was decided how to simulate a range of ‘exposome-response’ scenarios in order to test-drive many different statistical approaches.These scenarios are required to provide information about which statistical models will be most effective when we arrive at the "real" analyses based on data from from new clinical examinations and new biological measurements, planned for 2015.
Oliver Robinson, scientific coordinator of the HELIX project said “The meeting was extremely interesting and I feel we all learnt a lot from each other. The way forward in terms of analysis is certainly much clearer now. It was also great to join forces with the EXPOsOMICS project and take advantage of the great statisticians working across the two projects.”
The exposome is complex with many different environmental, lifestyle and nutritional exposures and needs specific statistic models to conduct appropriate analyses of the data to evaluate exposure response relationships. We are exploring a number of approaches including multiple testing, multivariate, variable selection and Bayesian methods. Watch this space for the soon to be expected scientific publications!
The team made sure to benefit from the positive health effects of exposure to the natural environment, which were integrated in the programme by means clean mountain air and fresh snow.