Estimating familial aggregation while adjusting for covariates Application to pulmonary function data from black and white sibships

Mary Frances Cotch, Terri H. Beaty, Alvaro Muñoz, Bernice H. Cohen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Although crude correlations are useful in family studies, some adjustment for effects of risk factors that vary both within and among families if often needed. A linear model for estimating sibship correlations while simultaneously considering height, age, race, sex, ascertainment, and smoking status was used on pulmonary function data on 1-second forced expiratory volume (FEV1) and the natural logarithm of the ratio of FEV1 to forced vital capacity (lnFEV%) from 402 adults in 152 white sibships and 172 adults in 59 black sibships. Crude correlations of .271 ± .048 (FEV1) and .342 ± .047 (lnFEV%) decreased significantly to .206 ±. 048 and .231 ± .048, respectively, after adjustment. For black and white sibs, adjusted intraclass correlations, although not statistically different, were .153 ± .089 and .225 ± .055 (FEV1), respectively, and were .103 ± .088 and .275 ± .054 (lnFEV%), respectively, suggesting that pulmonary function may aggregate more strongly among whites. This analysis illustrates how risk factor adjustment can be readily incorporated into familial correlation studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)317-324
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of epidemiology
Volume2
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1992

Keywords

  • Epidemiologic methods
  • ethnic groups
  • family correlations
  • spirometry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology

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