Network-based analysis of genome-wide scans of natural selection

Henry Xingzhi Song, The University of Texas School of Public Health


The genomic era brought by recent advances in the next-generation sequencing technology makes the genome-wide scans of natural selection a reality. Currently, almost all the statistical tests and analytical methods for identifying genes under selection was performed on the individual gene basis. Although these methods have the power of identifying gene subject to strong selection, they have limited power in discovering genes targeted by moderate or weak selection forces, which are crucial for understanding the molecular mechanisms of complex phenotypes and diseases. Recent availability and rapid completeness of many gene network and protein-protein interaction databases accompanying the genomic era open the avenues of exploring the possibility of enhancing the power of discovering genes under natural selection. The aim of the thesis is to explore and develop normal mixture model based methods for leveraging gene network information to enhance the power of natural selection target gene discovery. The results show that the developed statistical method, which combines the posterior log odds of the standard normal mixture model and the Guilt-By-Association score of the gene network in a naïve Bayes framework, has the power to discover moderate/weak selection gene which bridges the genes under strong selection and it helps our understanding the biology under complex diseases and related natural selection phenotypes.

Subject Area


Recommended Citation

Song, Henry Xingzhi, "Network-based analysis of genome-wide scans of natural selection" (2012). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI1532540.