Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 3

Variation Related Publications

3 Bayesian Meta-Analysis to Account for Heterogeneity in Studies Relating Life Events to Disease

Authors: Elizabeth Stojanovski

Abstract:

Associations between life events and various forms of cancers have been identified. The purpose of a recent random-effects meta-analysis was to identify studies that examined the association between adverse events associated with changes to financial status including decreased income and breast cancer risk. The same association was studied in four separate studies which displayed traits that were not consistent between studies such as the study design, location, and time frame. It was of interest to pool information from various studies to help identify characteristics that differentiated study results. Two random-effects Bayesian meta-analysis models are proposed to combine the reported estimates of the described studies. The proposed models allow major sources of variation to be taken into account, including study level characteristics, between study variance and within study variance, and illustrate the ease with which uncertainty can be incorporated using a hierarchical Bayesian modelling approach.

Keywords: Bayesian, Meta-analysis, Variation, random-effects

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2 Exploring the Spatial Characteristics of Mortality Map: A Statistical Area Perspective

Authors: Jung-Hong Hong, Jing-Cen Yang, Cai-Yu Ou

Abstract:

The analysis of geographic inequality heavily relies on the use of location-enabled statistical data and quantitative measures to present the spatial patterns of the selected phenomena and analyze their differences. To protect the privacy of individual instance and link to administrative units, point-based datasets are spatially aggregated to area-based statistical datasets, where only the overall status for the selected levels of spatial units is used for decision making. The partition of the spatial units thus has dominant influence on the outcomes of the analyzed results, well known as the Modifiable Areal Unit Problem (MAUP). A new spatial reference framework, the Taiwan Geographical Statistical Classification (TGSC), was recently introduced in Taiwan based on the spatial partition principles of homogeneous consideration of the number of population and households. Comparing to the outcomes of the traditional township units, TGSC provides additional levels of spatial units with finer granularity for presenting spatial phenomena and enables domain experts to select appropriate dissemination level for publishing statistical data. This paper compares the results of respectively using TGSC and township unit on the mortality data and examines the spatial characteristics of their outcomes. For the mortality data between the period of January 1st, 2008 and December 31st, 2010 of the Taitung County, the all-cause age-standardized death rate (ASDR) ranges from 571 to 1757 per 100,000 persons, whereas the 2nd dissemination area (TGSC) shows greater variation, ranged from 0 to 2222 per 100,000. The finer granularity of spatial units of TGSC clearly provides better outcomes for identifying and evaluating the geographic inequality and can be further analyzed with the statistical measures from other perspectives (e.g., population, area, environment.). The management and analysis of the statistical data referring to the TGSC in this research is strongly supported by the use of Geographic Information System (GIS) technology. An integrated workflow that consists of the tasks of the processing of death certificates, the geocoding of street address, the quality assurance of geocoded results, the automatic calculation of statistic measures, the standardized encoding of measures and the geo-visualization of statistical outcomes is developed. This paper also introduces a set of auxiliary measures from a geographic distribution perspective to further examine the hidden spatial characteristics of mortality data and justify the analyzed results. With the common statistical area framework like TGSC, the preliminary results demonstrate promising potential for developing a web-based statistical service that can effectively access domain statistical data and present the analyzed outcomes in meaningful ways to avoid wrong decision making.

Keywords: Variation, spatial patterns, mortality map, statistical area

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1 Variation in the Traditional Knowledge of Curcuma longa L. in North-Eastern Algeria

Authors: A. Bouzabata, A. Boukhari

Abstract:

Curcuma longa L. (Zingiberaceae), commonly known as turmeric, has a long history of traditional uses for culinary purposes as a spice and a food colorant. The present study aimed to document the ethnobotanical knowledge about Curcuma longa, and to assess the variation in the herbalists’ experience in Northeastern Algeria. Data were collected using semi-structured questionnaires and direct interviews with 30 herbalists. Ethnobotanical indices, including the fidelity level (FL%), the relative frequency citation (RFC), and use value (UV) were determined by quantitative methods. Diversity in the level of knowledge was analyzed using univariate, non-parametric, and multivariate statistical methods. Three main categories of uses were recorded for C. longa: for food, for medicine, and for cosmetic purposes. As a medicine, turmeric was used for the treatment of gastrointestinal, dermatological, and hepatic diseases. Medicinal and food uses were correlated with both forms of preparation (rhizome and powder). The age group did not influence the use. Multivariate analyses showed a significant variation in traditional knowledge, associated with the use value, origin, quality, and efficacy of the drug. The findings suggested that the geographical origin of C. longa affected the use in Algeria.

Keywords: Variation, Curcuma longa, curcuma indices, ethnobotanical knowledge

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