Using sufficient direction factor model to analyze latent activities associated with breast cancer survival

Seungchul Baek, Yen Yi Ho, Yanyuan Ma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


High-dimensional gene expression data often exhibit intricate correlation patterns as the result of coordinated genetic regulation. In practice, however, it is difficult to directly measure these coordinated underlying activities. Analysis of breast cancer survival data with gene expressions motivates us to use a two-stage latent factor approach to estimate these unobserved coordinated biological processes. Compared to existing approaches, our proposed procedure has several unique characteristics. In the first stage, an important distinction is that our procedure incorporates prior biological knowledge about gene-pathway membership into the analysis and explicitly model the effects of genetic pathways on the latent factors. Second, to characterize the molecular heterogeneity of breast cancer, our approach provides estimates specific to each cancer subtype. Finally, our proposed framework incorporates sparsity condition due to the fact that genetic networks are often sparse. In the second stage, we investigate the relationship between latent factor activity levels and survival time with censoring using a general dimension reduction model in the survival analysis context. Combining the factor model and sufficient direction model provides an efficient way of analyzing high-dimensional data and reveals some interesting relations in the breast cancer gene expression data.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1340-1350
Number of pages11
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Statistics and Probability
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Immunology and Microbiology
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences
  • Applied Mathematics


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