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The Value of Homogeneity for Association Studies

Association studies are conceptually similar to the detection of a signal on the background of noise. In the figure at right, the effect is represented in the context of homogeneous (inbred) versus heterogeneous (outbred) populations. When examining a homogeneous population it is immediately apparent that all the cases have a red right arm and all the controls have a blue right arm. Although this is also true in the heterogeneous samples, it is much less obvious. Likewise in disease-gene discovery, the functional effect is similar in all populations; however the detection of a predisposing gene will be facilitated by examining the homogeneous population.

(see also Scientific Publications)
demostration of association studies