Therefore, in order to explore a specific odds ratio (OR) for interaction, the case-only designs need fewer cases than case-control
studies. Moreover, the control group often has less motivation to participate in the study; therefore, the case-only design helps in minimizing the potential bias of participants. In case-only designs, data analysis is performed in a more straightforward way than in case-control designs. Although the case-only designs is not population-based, it uses simple sampling methods.18 The standard Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical case-control analysis often has a weak power to explore multiplicative interactions, which are the results of the low numbers of cases and controls in matrix cells of genotype and exposure. The assumption of independence Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical of gene-environment association results in a stronger estimation of interaction. However, the violation of this assumption results in an increased Type II error.19 The case–only design OR is calculated by multiplying the Enzastaurin nmr interaction (ORint) and OR of control group. If the independence assumption of gene and exposure in control group is valid and the disease is rare, the case-only OR measures interactional effect in a multiplicative model similar to the conventional case-control studies.17 To impose independence assumption, Weinberg and Umbach suggested
a Maximum Likelihood Method based on log-linear model. They have shown that their method Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical may need less than half of the individuals who do not have the gene-environment independence assumption.20 In the studies of gene-environment interactions a specific genotype might
be used. When the Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical genetic marker data is not available, the family history data may be used as a proxy for genetic susceptibility; however, such a use may result in the possibility of significant misclassification.21 Independence Assumption As Nicolle et al. stated clearly, the independence between gene and environment is central to valid interpretation of a case-only study.17 In practice, controlling non-independency is Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical not always easy. For example, the control of non-independence assumptions requires the knowledge of non-independence sources, which can be difficult or impossible to locate in some situations. It is difficult to control for sources of bias in cohort and case-control studies, Linifanib (ABT-869) therefore, it may also be difficult to control for the sources of bias in case-only studies. However, sensitivity analysis method, the benefits of which have been shown in case-control and cohort studies, may be used in case-only studies. As non-independence can be calculated in analysis, the case-only design may be a useful epidemiological instrument for examining gene-environment interactions.17 In the following, a formula has been provided to describe the situation in which OR is concluded for the gene-environment associations. The formula can be used to estimate gene environment OR in source population.